Chiang Mai –
19 Chinese immigrants were arrested in Chiang Mai yesterday, October 8, after reportedly crossing the Myanmar-Thailand border through a natural border, sparking local fear over potential transmission of the Covid-19 coronavirus.
Police Major General Decha Kalayawutthipong, chief of the Immigration Division 5, said the immigration police had raided two houses at a housing estate in Muang Chiang Mai district following a tip-off from a concerned citizen that a big group of Chinese nationals had rented the houses in the estate and might have been involved in illegal activities.
A total of 19 Chinese men and women were found staying in the houses during the raid. When the police asked for travel documents, 10 of them reportedly carried passports but none of them held legitimate visas to reside in the country, said the police chief.
They all allegedly confessed to having entered the country illegally via a natural border crossing before a broker reportedly arranged all rental procedures from them and took them to the houses.
The alleged illegal immigrants were initially charged for entering the Kingdom of Thailand without permission and failing to comply with the order of the communicable disease control officer under Section 3 (1) of the Disease Control Act 2015.
They have been given a Covid-19 test shortly after the arrest and are now quarantined at Chiang Mai prison. Their results are pending at a lab and possibly will be known by tomorrow, according to the Police Major General.
Following the tests the group will be deported at their expense, said the Major General.
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