Human Trafficking

Thai Immigrartion Bureau Increase Arrests for African Romance Scam Gangs

Thai Immigration Bureau Subdivision 1 has smashed an African gang of scams involving two Nigerian nationals and a Thai woman who have been arrested for allegedly running a romance scam at a house in Bangkok’s Ratchathewi district, Immigration Police chief Pol Lt-General Sompong Chingduang said.

“On June 23, police had arrested a Thai man in Nakhon Ratchasima province for committing financial fraud by opening 14 bank accounts using other people’s ID cards, for which he claimed he had paid Bt1,500 (S$67) each,” said Sompong.

“Thongchai later confessed that he was a part of a romance scam gang run by two foreigners and a Thai woman in Bangkok, so we tracked down the three suspects and arrested them.”

Police reportedly found several bank passbooks, ATM cards, mobile phone SIM cards and copy of ID cards at the house. The three suspects were charged with conspiracy to commit fraud.

A romance scam is generally perpetrated by feigning romantic intentions towards victims via social media. After gaining their trust and affection, the gang coaxes the victims into transferring money into bank accounts they control.

“This operation is part of the crackdown ordered by National Police chief Pol General Chakthip Chaijinda to track down foreigners who are using Thailand as a base for illegal operations that might endanger public safety or stain the country’s image,” said the Immigration Police chief.