HUGE CRACKDOWN ON OVERSTAYERS CONTINUES
FOLLOWING ON FROM OUR LAST MONTHS REPORT, THAILAND’S AUTHORITIES ARE CONTINUING TO HUNT FOR OVER 10,000 FOREIGNERS WHO HAVE ALLEGEDLY OVERSTAYED IN THIS COUNTRY, ACCORDING TO DEFENCE MINISTRY SPOKESMAN LT. GEN. KONGCHEEP TANTRAWANICH.
Those foreigners, suspected to have illegally overstayed in varied spots throughout cities and rural villages in Thailand, might possibly have been involved in crimes or any outlawed activities only to smear this country’s image in the eye of the international community, the spokesman said on Wednesday. The problem is visitors who think they can outwit the authorities, the net is closing in.
Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwan had ordered the authorities to locate and arrest the 10,000-plus suspected overstayers in addition to a number of others who may have illegally entered this country, he said.
Those illegal aliens, mostly of who came from Asia, Africa and Europe, will not only be arrested but have all their wealth confiscated by the authorities, he said.
They are believed to be currently hiding out in and around major tourist spots such as Pattaya, Phuket, Hua Hin, Koh Samui island and Bangkok, among other whereabouts throughout the country, including rural areas in Isaan and Chiang Rai province.
Aliens who overstay face stiff penalties, apart from mandatory fines and deportation, they also face lengthy prohibitions from re-entering the kingdom for up to 10 years and in some cases for life if crime is involved.
The night news desk have learnt tonight that the Police and Immigration are not just concentrating on tourist resorts but also rural areas in a bid to detain over stayers and undesirables.
The authorities keep a close eye on social media, a source told us “its easy, we watch Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, we do not just wait for over-stayers to come to our attention. Some of our intelligence comes from nationals in the area but our main source of information is from officers on the ground and of course social media”
Over-stayers are better off coming forward to be processed than be arrested at a checkpoint on the road or street.
Over stayers are advised to voluntarily turn themselves in before being caught, our source told us, “Its not if they get caught, it is when”
Meanwhile, the authorities have stepped up measures to combat cross-border drug trafficking amidst news reports that a very large volume of methamphetamine and other drugs have been produced in Myanmar’s Shan state and destined to be smuggled into Thai territory.
Millions of methamphetamine tablets have been seized and many suspected traffickers have been arrested by the authorities over the last several months.
This followers our earlier story of drugs being intercepted from Nong Khai down to Udon Thani.