Thai police announce arrest of key Rohingya smugglers – Myanmar national and his Thai wife
Thailand police arrested a couple suspected of trafficking in Rohingya people after escaping arrest since 2015, Pattaya Mail reports.
Assistant police chief Pol Lt Gen Surachate Hakparn said Muang Than Tun, a 55-year-old Myanmar national, and his Thai wife Rahana Jesama-ae were arrested at a restaurant on Rama IX Road in Bang Kapi district of Bangkok on Sept 1.
The couple was wanted under an arrest warrant issued by the Nathawi Court in 2015. They were among key suspects including local politicians, police and military personnel for the illegal immigration of Rohingya people.
They were identified after the discovery of about 30 dead Rohingya migrants in a forest on Khao Kaew mountain in Sadao district of Songkhla in May 2015. The ill-fated illegal migrants were believed to wait in vain for their farther trip to a third country.
The Myanmar-Thai couple had their names changed and held Malaysian passports for their return to Thailand.
Pol Lt Gen Surachate said the couple had a house in Kuala Lumpur, were online traders and ran a tour firm in Malaysia. They were among major people smugglers who brought Rohingya people from the Rakhine State of Myanmar via Thailand to Malaysia and operated their tour bus firm as a front.
In the case, police had arrest warrants for 153 suspects. Of them, 124 were arrested, three died and 26 were at large, Pol Lt Gen Surachate said. (TNA)