75 foreigners detained for illegal stay, working

Police pace through tourist-crowded Soi Cowboy in Bangkok during an inspection early on Wednesday, part of a nationwide operation against foreigners staying illegally and working in Thailand. (Photo by Patipat Janthong)

Seventy-five foreigners have been detained in police raids across the country aimed at overstayers, people working illegally and crime.

The suspects were mainly from African countries, Myanmar and the Philippines, rounded up in an operation that targeted 110 areas, police said.

The charges include illegally entering Thailand, overstaying visas and working without permission.

Police have tightened their crackdown on foreigners who work illegally, many as English language teachers, football players in small leagues and even priests.

But some are members of criminal gangs in Thailand producing counterfeit banknotes, electronic cards, operating phone-call centres and running romance scams online that cheat Thai women out of money.

In Bangkok, the tourist bar hub of Soi Cowboy was also inspected in the early hours on Wednesday by Tourist Police Bureau deputy chief Pol Maj Gen Surachet Hakphal.

Earlier in the night police arrested six foreigners for overstaying their visas and working without permission in Pattaya resort beach.

One of them had lived there for three years, Pattaya police chief Pol Col Aphichai Kropphet said. – Bangkok Post

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