Police bring home 6 Thai women forced into prostitution in Myanmar

image via Sanook

Police brought home 6 Thai women who posted videos on social media to say they had been forced into prostitution in Myanmar and needed help. The police picked up the women from the Thailand – Myanmar Friendship Bridge in Mae Sai district, Chiang Rai province, after coordinating with Burmese authorities.

The group includes 31 year old Nanny from Nonthaburi, 25 year old Ray from Songkhla, 25 year old Ing from Amnat Charoen, 33 year old Nae from Bangkok, 21 year old Cake from Pathum Thani, and 33 year old Boom from Khon Kaen.

The women said they took a bus together from Bangkok to Chiang Rai on June 28 and illegally snuck across the border into Tachileik state in Myanmar the next day. The women said they were promised 600,000 baht per month to work at an entertainment venue in Mong La in Shan State.

Once they arrived, they were taken to Pok town in Kengtung and forced into prostitution, the women told police. When all 6 women resisted, they were told by traffickers that their families would have to send ransom money if they wanted to leave. The traffickers told them that if any of them escaped, the other women would have to “pay their debts” for them.

All 6 women posted videos on social media requesting help. Thai authorities saw the videos and contacted the Royal Thai Embassy in Yangon for help. The embassy requested help from the Burmese government which requested assistance from the United Wa State Army.

Soldiers from the United Wa State Army raided a hotel in Pok and helped all 6 women to escape. The soldiers took the women to the border and handed them over to Thai authorities in Mae Sai.

Police took the women for health checks before taking them for questioning at Mai Sai Police Station. Police said they are still figuring out whether the women worked voluntarily or if they were deceived.

Pol. Maj. Gen Pananchai Cheunjaitam thanked Burmese authorities for their help getting the women back to Thailand.

SOURCE: Sanook

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Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.

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