Immigration of Thailand have praised the new biometrics system that has been installed in the country just months ago claiming to have arrested thousands of foreigners on overstay charges, stating that the international standard system is working. The new biometrics system has resulted in thousands of arrests and also in collecting millions of Baht in fines.
At a press conference at the weekend, there were several vinyl boards to add to the hype and the word “biometrics” was everywhere as good.
Lt-Gen Sompong Chingduang “Big Oud” announced the arrests of many foreigners using Thailand as an intermediate country to travel to destinations for asylum in the UK and work in South Korea or Japan.
In the first case 3 Iranians – father and children – were arrested in Thailand on fake Greek passports which they had bought for 50,000 Euros in Turkey heading to the UK via Thailand. Later the same day another Iranian national using the same way was stopped. Both cases 2 of the passports showed up via biometrics as stolen on Interpol list. On the 12th a Syrian man and two Palestinian women used Thailand as a third country to travel using fake Swedish passports bought at a cost of 12,500 Euros each. Friday the 13th proved unlucky for a Nigerian who was no match for the biometrics system was travelling on a fake South African passport he had bought from an agent in Turkey. Lt-Gen Sompong “Big Oud” said that the biometrics system had checked a total of 17 million people so far finding 1,123 on blacklists or Persona non grata, 45,669 overstaying their visas in Thailand and resulted in 81 million baht in fines collection.