Two Chinese nationals and a Thai man were arrested yesterday for allegedly running a loan-shark network and providing illegal gambling services, according to the Immigration Bureau.
Chu, 49, and Zhiping, 31, both Chinese nationals, and Chala, a 32-year-old Thai national, were detained at their company located in Bangkok’s Huai Kwang district when immigration police dropped by as part of a visa review process for Chu, said IB deputy chief Pol Maj Gen Nattapol Sawaengkij.
Based on immigration police records, Chu wanted to prolong his stay in the country to work as a board member of an investment firm, he said.
Immigration police also found that there were two other board members – a 31-year-old Chinese national and a 32-year-old Thai man – and decided to inspect the firm, which turned out to be a front for illegal lending and gambling services, he said.
According to Pol Maj Gen Sawaengkij, when the officers arrived at the firm, they found the premises were under extra-tight security and called for back-up. They then identified themselves as immigration officers and asked to conduct an inspection, he said.
Several employees reportedly appeared nervous and scrambled to close their chat windows and some computer programmes. Some of them also reportedly tried to leave the building.
Alarmed by their behaviour, police ordered everyone to stop what they were doing and back away from their computers before making the inspection, Pol Maj Gen Sawaengkij said.
He said it turned out that the employees were persuading people to obtain loans via lending applications, adding that some workers admitted they also provided illegal gambling services.