Thailand steps up plan to stop criminals entering the Kingdom
Immigration at Thai borders and airports will be stepped up a notch in an attempt to prevent foreign criminals from entering the Kingdom.
The Immigration Police Bureau will soon use bio-metric devices to detect foreign criminals travelling to Thailand in the guise of tourists for criminal activities in Bangkok and other parts of the country, according to IPB acting commissioner Pol Lt Gen Suthipong Wongpin.
Pol Lt Gen Suthipong said immigration police currently scan foreign criminals on the black list entering Thailand by checking their fingerprints.
The current system to detect criminals is not effective. Some criminals went back to their home countries and returned under new names, he said.
Late on the night of Oct 16, immigration police detected a Nigerian national, who had been involved in the drug trade and sentenced to five years in jail, among other criminals. After being released, the man could still return to Thailand where he again conducted illegal activities.
“We are now checking for foreign criminals from their fingerprints. We will soon introduce biometric devices to verify or recognise the identity of a person from facial images and other characteristics. The devices are being installed and expected to be soon in use so that our work can be more effective,” said Pol Lt Gen Suthipong.
Pol Lt Gen Suthipong said the IPB has stepped up the suppression against foreign criminals operating in Thailand. They include:
– The Chinese gang. Members of this gang prey on victims in Yaowarat area as pickpockets for cash and credit cards. They also steal at jewelry fairs.
– The Algerian gang. Gang members are pickpockets preying on passengers at the airports and on electric trains. They don’t stay long at a certain place, but keep moving. They are mostly found in Sukhumvit area and sometimes in Ramkhamhaeng area.
– The Philippine gang. Members of this gang are also pickpockets, preying on victims at the airports and on electric trains. They are often found in Pratunam area, but not staying in groups.
– The Indonesian gang. Its members are mostly pickpockets, found in Pratunam area.
– The Nigerian gang. Members of the gang are involved in the drug trade and cheating via the Internet. They stay all over Bangkok and its vicinity, mostly in condominiums in Bang Na, Phra Ram 9 and Udomsuk areas.