Can sex offenders enter Thailand?

Can a person registered as a sex offender in the United States – but not wanted by the authorities – enter Thailand with a tourist visa?

Sam, New York.

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2 Answer(s)

This is completely outdated. Thailand changed it in 2018. No one on the sex registration list from any country in the world is allowed in Thailand now

Answered on November 21, 2020.
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If you are registered as a sex offender in your home country, but you are not wanted by police in your country and you are not on our watch list, then you will be allowed to enter Thailand.

If you have been convicted of a sex offence in Thailand and are registered as a sex offender here, then we consider your behavior dangerous to our country. We will cancel your visa and put you on our watch list. You will not be allowed to enter Thailand until this order is officially revoked.

If you have already entered Thailand and we find out later – no matter how much later – that you are wanted by police in your home country, then once we receive a request from police in your home country to arrest you, we will do so immediately. We will cancel your visa and deport you.

For example, there was an Israeli who was wanted for committing a crime in Israel. He fled to Thailand and married here. He had a Thai wife for 12 years.

We received a request from the Israeli police to help find him. When we found him, we deported him immediately.

If you are registered as a sex offender in a third country – not Thailand or your home country – and we consider your behavior dangerous to Thailand, you will be added to our watch list and you will not be allowed to enter.

One famous example is the case of English rock star Gary Glitter, who was found guilty of sex offenses in Vietnam.

On his way back to England, he changed his mind and wanted to enter Thailand for a few days.

However, he was on our watch list and we considered his behavior might be dangerous to our country or might damage our reputation.

So we denied him entry to Thailand. What we could do in his case was just send him back to England.

For tourists arriving in Thailand asking for a visa on arrival, if we find out that a Thai court has issued a warrant for your arrest, you will be arrested immediately.

If a court in your home country has issued a warrant for your arrest, we will report your arrival to the police in your home country and discuss with them how to proceed. This include cases of suspects from countries that do not have an extradition treaty with Thailand.

We keep an eye on foreign persons whose behavior may be harmful to Thai people or might damage our reputation. If we find such people, we arrest or deport them.

All this follows the policy laid down by Immigration Bureau Commissioner Lt Gen Wiboon Bangthamai, which mandates that Immigration Police must adhere to the “3 S”: Security, Service Mind and Standard.

Pol Col Pakpong Saiubol, Immigration Division 2 Superintendent and Deputy Spokesman of the Immigration Bureau.

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