Thai police arrest woman with links to Rohingya trafficking to Malaysia

NEWS AGENCY

Thai police arrested a woman wanted in connection with the alleged trafficking of Rohingya to Malaysia seven years ago, Malaysia’s Bernama reports.

Central Investigation Bureau said the woman, believed to be an agent supplying Rohingya to work in Malaysia, was arrested in Kanchanaburi on Monday, after seven years on the run.

“The police believed the woman went into hiding in a neighbouring country after the court issued arrest warrants in 2015,” it said.

The woman has been sent to Bangkok for prosecution.

In May 2015, police discovered 139 graves in 28 temporary camps run by a human trafficking syndicate in the jungle near the Thai-Malaysian border in Wang Kelian. Similar graves were also found in Thailand.

The victims were said to have come from Myanmar and Bangladesh in search of jobs.

Thai police issued arrest warrants for 153 individuals, including Thai Army officers and local officials who were allegedly involved in the human trafficking in 2015.

A former army general, Manas Kongpan, was convicted with other officials and dozens of Thai nationals after a lengthy trial which began in 2015.

In 2017, the criminal court sentenced Manas to 27 years jail on different charges including trafficking in persons, smuggling illegal migrants into the country and organised crime.

Manas died of a heart attack at the Medical Correctional Hospital in Bangkok where he was hospitalised in June, last year.

Apart from Manas, the criminal court sentenced 62 defendants including the former mayor of a subdistrict of the southern Songkhla province, Banjong Pongphon to 78 years in prison.

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