Melaka Sentral Bus Terminal, Malaysia. Photo: Google Maps

Malaysian authorities have appealed for public assistance after failing to locate an Indonesian man who escaped from the medical unit at an immigration detention center on Wednesday morning after pretending that he was suffering from asthma.

Muhammad Reza Pahlevi was being held on several criminal charges at the Machap Umboo Immigration Detention Center in Alor Gajah and was with a group of 97 people whose documents were being processed when he complained of a shortness of breath. He escaped through the window of an examination room at the medical center sometime between 9:30am and 10:25am.

Police said the detainee ran into a nearby palm oil plantation, took a free ride in a Perodua Kancil public car, and then told a taxi driver to take him to Muar or Pasir Gudang. The driver dropped him at the Melaka Sentral Bus Terminal instead, as he did not appear to have the taxi fare.

There have been no further sightings of the escapee, who was due to be tried in Seri Alam, Johor, for his alleged role in a robbery at a budget hotel that involved the use of machetes. He also faces separate charges of possessing drugs.

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