Connect with us


Warning over forged Immigration stamps

Legacy Phuket Gazette



PHUKET: The Superintendent of the Phuket Provincial Immigration Office, Pol Col Sayan Krasaesan, has warned foreigners not to use the services of companies or individuals offering immigration services. His warning comes after 12 foreigners were arrested at Sadao Immigration office and others in Bangkok for having forged entry stamps in their passports. The foreigners, including British, New Zealand and French nationals, have since been released on bail of 160,000 baht each. All were arrested while doing legitimate visa runs. Some were doing “turnaround runs” to extend their stay on non-immigrant visas, while others were renewing tourist permits. Immigration officials spotted the bogus entry stamps, indicating that the passport-holders might not have actually left the country when earlier permits to stay had expired. The forged entry stamps purported to have been issued by Immigration offices in Sadao, Tak Bai and Padang Besar entry crossings, but officials say they do not know yet where they were stamped. “Foreigners must go to an Immigration office in person [to get entry permits],” Col Sayan told the Gazette. “They should not give their passports to other people to handle visa matters. “We are investigating agencies that offer this service for foreigners,” he added. The Gazette has learned that other foreigners were stopped and questioned – but not arrested – at Ranong Immigration after they, too, were found to have the forged stamps in their passports. An officer at Ranong Immigration, speaking on condition of anonymity, told the Gazette that he knew about the tourists being arrested at Sadao Immigration and in Bangkok. “The problem comes from them using the services of a company in Phuket. “This company took 2,500 baht from each of the foreigners, but didn’t obtain entry permits from Immigration. Instead, it stamped fake stamps in their passports. “It seems that the foreigners didn’t know this was illegal, and that they are the victims. “I think foreigners should know about this news,” he added, “so that they have a better understanding of the rules.” A high-level official at Sadao Immigration, also speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed that the 12 foreigners were arrested there in August and September “because they didn’t go to Immigration themselves but gave their passports to the service agent.” The Sadao Immigration office took a harder line than Ranong. “The officers could not determine whether the passport-holders knew the stamps were forged, but we had to assume they did – and if you know a stamp is forged and you still use it, then you are liable to be arrested.” The officer said that, during questioning, the foreigners had not given officials much useful information, but that all of them seemed to believe that using an agent was legal. “I don’t know whether Immigration officers were involved, but it seems unlikely because the Immigration Bureau is currently very tough on corruption,” he added. He said that the forged stamps were similar to real ones but had differences that could be detected by officials. “If you came to Immigration in person [to get an entry stamp], then you have no need to worry,” he added. Pol Col Apirak Hongtong, former head of Immigration in Phuket and now Deputy Commander of Phuket Provincial Police, advised “innocent” foreigners who did not realize that they had broken the law by using an agent to obtain immigration stamps, to go to his office to straighten matters out, rather than waiting to be arrested. “Bring your passport to me and I will advise you and help you as much as I can,” he said. Col Apirak’s office is next to the Phuket Town Police Station on Chumphon Rd. The telephone numbers are 076-212046, 076-212129 or 076-221157.


Want more Thailand news from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📝️ Join the conversation on Thaiger Talk - discuss news & life in our Thailand forums
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Coronavirus (Covid-19)3 hours ago

AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines to be donated to Thailand from Japan

Bangkok3 hours ago

Bangkok police warn that protests planned for Thursday break the Emergency Decree

Thailand4 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Hotel occupancy, Phuket beaches hit with tar balls, doctor ‘warning’ | June 21

Phuket Sandbox July 1st


Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in July - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages in June!

Thailand4 hours ago

Pattaya residents complain of sinkholes in road, couple sustains injuries

Insurgency4 hours ago

2 suspected insurgents killed in gunfire exchange with police-military team

Best of4 hours ago

Top 8 Things to do in Hua Hin

Thailand5 hours ago

Army raids a house, arrests 53 as part of alleged gambling operation

Best of5 hours ago

Top 5 Insurance Companies for Expats in Thailand

Thailand5 hours ago

Thailand abstains from vote on UN resolution condemning Myanmar violence

Leisure5 hours ago

Top 5 Rooftop Bars in Bangkok

Best of5 hours ago

Top 5 Shabu-Shabu Restaurants in Bangkok

Indonesia5 hours ago

Indonesia approaches 2 million Covid cases

Thailand6 hours ago

Monday Covid Update: 3,175 new cases; infections rise in the Deep South

Pollution6 hours ago

Oil slick and ‘tar balls’ wash up on Phuket’s beaches – what caused it?

Best of6 hours ago

Top 5 Ice Cream Shops in Bangkok

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism4 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8