At least 700 with Thai citizens majority arrested in Tachileik online scam crackdown

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Khit/ Munich (NP News) - Feb 27

Security forces in Tachileik Township of eastern Shan State arrested an online scam gang and apprehended approximately 700 individuals including a significant number of Thai citizens.

On 23 February, security forces under the State Administration Council (SAC) conducted a raid on a suspected online scam operation located in a compound on Toenaya Road, Sansai-B Ward, Tachileik.

"Yes, security forces conducted a raid on a suspected online scam operation in Tachileik," a source close to the security forces confirmed to the NP News. "The majority of those apprehended were reported to be Thai nationals, with hundreds of individuals involved. Only a small number of Chinese nationals were identified. Computers and related equipment were also seized during the operation."

The raid was conducted an online scam gang operating from two 3-story buildings and three 2-story buildings.

Authorities detained a total of 689 individuals involved in online scams. This group reportedly included 75 Thai males, 73 Thai females, one Chinese national, and 540 Myanmar nationals.

In addition, authorities seized approximately 400 computers, 11 fireproof safes, phones, a car, a motorcycle, and other related equipment. The seized items are currently undergoing security processing.

An entrepreneur living near the location of the online scam operation in Tachileik informed the NP News that the operation must be the collaborative efforts between Myanmar, Thailand, and China to eradicate the online scam groups.

According to the entrepreneur, "They do have support from China, who provides them with specific targets and their locations. The group operates through cooperative efforts between China, Thailand, and Myanmar. If their operation in Tachileik proves successful, they plan to expand to Shwekokko."

The SAC has declared the presence of a significant number of online scams and illicit online gambling enterprises in border regions and the SAC is making collaborative endeavors between Myanmar, China, and Thailand to eradicate these fraudulent activities.

The majority of those involved in these online scams are Chinese along with Thai and other citizens. However, they are being shielded by armed groups.

It is reported that the aforementioned individuals are illegally residing in Myanmar especially in the border areas and engaging in online scams.

More than 50,000 foreigners who illegally entered Myanmar were detained between 5 October 2023, and 29 January 2024. It is reported that they have been repatriated to their respective authorities and countries.

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