Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar said more than 50 individuals suspected of having links to the militant intruders in Lahad Datu have been detained under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act.
He said the suspects, including women, were being detained in several locations in Sabah but outside the 'Ops Daulat' area.
"They were detained under the new act (Security Offenses [Special Measures] Act 2012) and read together with (several sections of) the Penal Code," he told a joint press conference with the Armed Forces Chief, Jeneral) Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd. Zin here Friday.
The Ops Daulat operation entered its fourth day Friday with helicopters being used to dispatch troops to locations in the vicinity to carry out the sweeping and mopping operations while fighter jets were flying above to monitor the situation.
Ismail said police were now obtaining information on the militant intruders from those detained to enable the security forces to achieve the objective of the operation.
However, he declined to disclose details of the arrest for fear that it could jeopardize the investigation.
"Regardless, the arrests were necessary because there were signs to link the suspects with the intruders," he said.
Meanwhile, Zulkifeli said that as of 5pm, the armed forces were still waiting for word from the Foreign Ministry on the development that the intruders would surrender without conditions.
"We have contacted Wisma Putra and there has been no news since this morning...no indication (on the surrender) from the relevant party.
"As such, the Ops Daulat will continue," he said adding that there had been no exchange of fire between the security forces and the enemy Friday.