14 Myanmar nationals arrested on Malaysian border

14 Myanmar nationals arrested on Malaysian border

Security authorities keep an eye on Myanmar nationals arrested on Saturday on the Thai border in Sadao district of Songkhla. (Photo: Assawin Pakkawan)
Security authorities keep an eye on Myanmar nationals arrested on Saturday on the Thai border in Sadao district of Songkhla. (Photo: Assawin Pakkawan)

SONGKHLA: Fourteen Myanmar nationals were arrested on Saturday on the Thai side of the border opposite Malaysia's Kedah State in Sadao district, police said.

The migrants were arrested in two groups.

The first group was arrested on Saturday afternoon when a Toyota Rivo pickup was intercepted on a road along the border at Rai Tok village in tambon Samnak Kham. Found in the pick-up were seven Myanmar migrants -- four men and three women.

Sukhipli Arong, 37, the pick-up driver from Pattani province, told the authorities he picked up the migrants at about 11am at Khuan Chong village in Na Mom district. He said he was hired to transport the migrants to the border with Malaysia for 1,000 baht per passenger.

At the border, the authorities found another seven Myanmar migrants -- five men and two women -- hiding in the bush, waiting to be taken across the border. They had been transported in another vehicle from Songkhla to the border.

The 14 migrants said they had earlier travelled in taxis from Ang Thong province to Na Mom district in Songkhla. They had each paid 3,500 Malaysian ringits, about 45,000 baht, to brokers for jobs in Malaysia.

An investigation was underway into the human smuggling ring.

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