Myanmar border crossers arrested

Myanmar border crossers arrested

Myanmar migrants arrested by soldiers of the Surasee Force after illegally crossing the border into Sangkhlaburi district, Kanchanaburi, on Tuesday morning. (Photo:  Piyarat Chongcharoen)
Myanmar migrants arrested by soldiers of the Surasee Force after illegally crossing the border into Sangkhlaburi district, Kanchanaburi, on Tuesday morning. (Photo: Piyarat Chongcharoen)

KANCHANABURI: Twenty-one Myanmar nationals were arrested after they illegally crossed the border into Thailand in Sangkhlaburi district, entering through a rubber plantation, on Tuesday morning.

Nine men and 11 women, one with a child, were spotted walking in a rubber plantation about 4am near Moo 8 village in tambon Nong Lu by a patrol of soldiers from the Surasee Force.

They were rounded up and taken to Sangkhlaburi police station. They were charged with illegal entry and violating the Disease Control Act and an order of the provincial disease control committee closing the border.

Some of the migrants could speak Thai. They told authorities they left their home village, Ban Bo Yipun, nearby in Myanmar, about 3am. Led by a local guide, they crossed the border into Sangkhlaburi.

They were arrested by soldiers while on their way to meet a vehicle that would take them to  destinations in Nakhon Pathom, Samut Sakhon and Samut Songkhram provinces.

They had paid 15,000-18,000 baht each to people who arranged the journey.

While they were being rounded up by the soldiers, the guide fled into the darkness.

The border with Myanmar has been closed to stem the spread of the coronavirus, but  Myanmar nationals have been arrested almost daily, illegally entering the country through the many natural passes in the hope of getting work.

The detention cell at Sangkhlaburi police station on Tuesday held 47 illegal migrants awaiting legal proceedings. This increased concerns of Covid-19 being spread while they are in detention.

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