Thai cops detain 27 Rohingya being smuggled into M'sia


NARATHIWAT: Thai authorities detained 27 ethnic Rohingyas in the Salamai sub-district of Tak Bai early today for allegedly trying to enter Malaysia.

Narathiwat Regional Immigration chief Col Noppadol Rakchart said those detained, comprising 22 men, three women and two children, were arrested in a lorry at 1.30am (local time).

"The lorry driver, identified as Somrak, disclosed that he drove the Rohingyas from Ban Mod, Thung Krut in Bangkok to Narathiwat, before handing them over to a syndicate which will smuggle them to Malaysia," he told reporters here today.

Noppadol said the driver had done the same with two groups of Rohingyas to Narathiwat before this and was paid Baht 30,000 (RM3,800) for each trip.

Meanwhile, one of the ethnic Rohingyas, via an interpreter, said they entered Thailand via the Mae Sot border after paying Baht 15,000 (RM1,900) to the syndicate. -- BERNAMA