Two CNN reporters in Thailand have had their visas revoked after authorities caught them reporting from inside a daycare that was off-limits after a mass murder.
The deputy commissioner of Immigration, Pol Maj Gen. Achayon Kraithong, stated on Sunday that their visas were revoked because they were ineligible to work in Thailand.
He stated that they entered Thailand on tourist visas that did not permit them to work as reporters in Thailand.
The two could face additional charges, Pol Maj Gen. Achayon said.
Australian-born journalist Anna Coren, 47, and British-born cameraman Daniel Hodge, 34, both working for CNN, arrived at Suvarnabhumi airport on Thursday and were granted tourist status until November 19.
On Thursday, Ms. Coren and Mr. Hodge were assigned by CNN to cover the daycare massacre in northeastern Thailand.
The two unlawfully entered the crime scene and reported from inside the daycare where a disgraced police officer had brutally murdered 24 children.
On Saturday, the image of the two climbing over the fence from the centre was made public.
CNN announced later on Sunday that it had removed the story from its website but did not admit any wrongdoing.
Mike McCarthy, executive vice president of CNN International, said, “We deeply regret any distress or offence our report may have caused, as well as any inconvenience to the Thai police during such a difficult time for the country.”
McCarthy continued to insist that the reporters entered the daycare “in good faith” with permission, despite learning later that the officials who granted them access lacked authority.
The Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand and the Thai Journalists Association have criticized CNN’s coverage and intrusion into the cordon area.
Its members are dismayed by CNN’s recent coverage of the mass murders. “A CNN crew entered a marked crime scene without permission, regardless of their claim.
This was an egregious breach of journalistic ethics and a lack of professionalism.
The president of the Uthai Sawan TAO, Mr. Danaichoke Boonsom, filed complaints at the Na Klang police station accusing the two of entering state offices without permission.
After leaving the police station, he exclaimed, “Give us respect.” “What were you thinking?”
Pol Col Jakkapat Vijitvaithaya stated that police would press the trespassing charge against the two CNN employees and that they would officially notify them of the charge.
On Saturday, Deputy national police chief Pol Gen Surachate Hakpan stated that the two might face additional charges, including being blacklisted from Thailand.