SAMUT PRAKAN: A 45-year-old woman has been arrested in Bang Phli district and charged with cheating hundreds of Myanmar workers out of about 7 million baht with fraudulent passport and visa services.
Police and labour officials arrested Wassana Wongkhamjan at her house on Friday morning. It is the registered offie of KPS Management Co.
The officials had court warrants for her arrest and to search the premises. They found about 40 passports and receipts in the house and were examining them.
Pol Lt Col Nopadol Changruean, deputy chief of Muang Samut Prakan station, said Ms Wassana denied the public fraud charge. She told police that she had not received money from migrant workers, but job brokers had.
Her arrest followed the complaints filed by about 300 Myanmar workers at the police station on Thursday. They said the company claimed it could arrange the renewal of their passports and visas. They were charged 5,000-17,000 baht each, but never received the promised service.
Labour rights activist Achariya Ruangratanapong, who took the migrants to the police station, alleged on Friday that Ms Wassana tried to "get familiar" with senior police officers and reporters, posed for photos with them and then posted the pictures and the logo of a mainstream TV channel on social media.
She had offered passport and visa services to both legal and illegal migrant workers since March, he said. The migrants took the action because of the approaching Oct 31 deadline for their work permit renewal, he said.
About 500 migrant workers, who had paid about 7 million baht in total to her company, were filing their complaints with police, Mr Achariya said.
Police show Wassana Wongkhamjan their arrest and search warrants, at her house on Friday morning. (Photo supplied)