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Thailand’s Immigration Ramps Up Checks on Foreigners

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Thailand's Immigration Ramps Up Checks on Foreigners

Thailand’s Immigration Bureau has increased security at all international airports in preparation for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit later this week.

Police Lt Gen Pakphumpipat Sajjapan, the commissioner of the Immigration Bureau, stated that authorities are closely monitoring foreign arrivals, particularly foreigners who may pose a security threat to the Apec summit.

Authorities have barred over 2,000 people from entering the country since the beginning of October, many of whom were already on Thailand’s immigration blacklist, he said, adding that authorities will also closely monitor the activities of foreign residents during the summit.

“Those found to be involved in suspicious activities will be interrogated and deported,” he said.

According to Pol Lt Gen Pakphumpipat, the bureau coordinates with its foreign counterparts to ensure that its officers have the most up-to-date information on suspected or wanted criminals who may attempt to enter the country.

More officers will be posted to staff the immigration entry checkpoint counters at Suvarnabhumi airport, according to the IB chief, because the airport will see an increase in traffic as the summit takes place.

To avoid airport congestion, Thailand’s Immigration Bureau has mobilized its officers to welcome visitors who are arriving in large numbers.

Immigration Bureau spokesman Pol Maj Gen Choengron Rimpadee said immigration officers were fully deployed to receive foreign visitors due to heavy inbound traffic.

He was responding to online images of large crowds of foreign visitors waiting for their visa process in the passport check area of Suvarnabhumi airport on November 10 (from the Bangkok I Love You FB page).

Immigration lineups Bangkok airport

Regarding the photos, Pol Maj Gen Choengron stated that the traffic occurred in the afternoon of November 10 when 20-25 flights landed with approximately 3,000 passengers per hour at the airport.

According to Pol Maj Gen Choengron, approximately 57,000 people arrive by air daily, with up to 49,000 foreigners. He said most visitors were Indian, South Korean, Singaporean, and Malaysian.

Arrival traffic was close to pre-COVID-19 levels, with around 60,000 people per day, according to Pol Maj Gen Choengron.

“It is good news because the Thai economy will recover following the government’s policy, which has introduced measures to stimulate tourism, such as extending the tourist visa periods, Pol Maj Gen Choengron said.

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Meanwhile, Pol Lt Gen Pakphumpipat reports 785 foreign migrant workers were arrested for overstaying their visas between October 10 and Saturday, while 1,249 others were arrested for illegal entry, including 770 from Laos, 349 from Myanmar, 108 from Cambodia, and 22 “others.”

According to him, two of those arrested were on Interpol’s Red Notice list.

The first, he said, was a 27-year-old Chinese citizen named Li, who was arrested for allegedly defrauding over 400,000 victims out of 50 million baht using a mobile application.

According to Interpol, Li and his accomplice launched an investment app in China to defraud victims before fleeing with the money.

Later, a tip led to his location at a house in Bangkok’s Sutthisan district.

The other is a 40-year-old Chinese national identified as Hu by police for alleged illegal property possession and forgery.

An investigation revealed that the suspect hid near Suvarnabhumi Airport in Samut Prakan.

Furthermore, immigration officers apprehended a Taiwanese national known only as Zhang, the leader of a call centre scam ring in the Philippines.

His arrest came after immigration officers discovered his 24-million-baht Ferrari in a Bangkok department store.

He showed authorities his Cambodian passport, but a check revealed that his biometric information was linked to two counterfeit Taiwanese passports.

Immigration Directs all 90-Day Reporting to Updated Website

Thai Immigration Directs all 90-Day Reporting to Updated Website

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