Thai man arrested for smuggling 15 Bangladeshi nationals

Photo via MGR Online

The Songkhla Provincial Immigration Police arrested a Thai man for smuggling 15 Bangladeshi people into the country in exchange for a transport fee of 2,000 baht each.

Immigration police received a tip-off that a Thai driver was using the Asian Highway in the Rattanaphum district in the southern province of Songkhla to transport Bangladeshi workers to a construction site in Malaysia. So they set up a road checkpoint and managed to stop the suspicious pickup.

The driver, 28 year old Thai man named Saifa, admitted to the crime when 15 Bangladeshis were found huddled in the back of Saifa’s truck. Each worker was between 20 and 40 years old and exhausted. Officers provided them with food and drinking water before taking legal action.

The Bangladeshi people revealed to the police that they wanted to work in construction sites in Malaysia to earn more money. They earned only 400 to 500 Bangladeshi takas, or about 128 to 160 baht, a day in their country. They paid 400,000 takas, or about 128,000 baht to the agencies to travel to Malaysia.

According to the police report, the group flew from Bangladesh to Vietnam, travelled to Cambodia by car, and walked to Thailand through the Isaan province of Sa Kaeo. Another Thai man picked them up and dropped them off in the central province of Chacherngsao where Saifa took over the journey.

Saifa confessed that this was his second time smuggling people to Malaysia. He used to deliver food and vegetables, but could not earn enough to cover his expenses because the employer cheated him. He found this illegal job through a group on the LINE application and earned 2,000 baht per foreigner.

Saifa explained that he would send the group to the Southern Region Industry Estate in Songkhla and another car would pick them up for Malaysia.

Saifa faces a jail term of up to five years and a fine of up to 50,000 baht for violating Section 64 of the Immigration Act by aiding or assisting illegal foreigners to evade arrest.

The Bangladeshi people face a charge for entering the country illegally. The penalty would be imprisonment for up to two years and a fine of up to 20,000 baht.

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Petch Petpailin

Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger who focuses on translating breakingThai news stories into English. With a background in field journalism, Petch brings several years of experience to the English News desk at The Thaiger. Before joining The Thaiger, Petch worked as a content writer for several known blogging sites in Bangkok, including Happio and The Smart Local. Her articles have been syndicated by many big publishers in Thailand and internationally, including the Daily Mail, The Sun and the Bangkok Post. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp! But during office hours, you can find Petch on LinkedIn and you can reach her by email at

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