Many of the Burmese women and girls who were rescued from prostitution in downtown Chanthaburi earlier in November had been lured into the act under the noses of police authorities, according to a news report by Bangkok Post.
On November 9, officers from the Department of Special Investigation (DSI) and the Chanthaburi police raided a massage parlour in Marina on Tha Chalaeb Road.
The raid resulted in the rescue of 67 ethnic Shan women, 37 of whom were minors. They have now been put under the custody of the Social Development and Human Security Ministry, the news report said.
According to Pol Lt Col Komvich Pathanarat, director of the human trafficking prevention and suppression centre at DSI, a women’s right organisation tipped him off last month that Burmese women and girls had been lured into prostitution at the parlour.
The organisation had alerted the local police but little development was made; thus, it sought help from the DSI, said the officer as cited by a Bangkok Post news report.
After the verification of the information, Pol Lt Pol Komvich, together with the Chanthaburi police, had devised a plan to save the workers, he said in news report.
On November 9, he pretended as a visitor to the parlour and saw the workers as described. Authorities then raided the place and rescued the Burmese women, who were thought to have been victims of trafficking.
The official said he was searching for Aey, 16, after her aunt sough the DSI and police’s help to find her. The girl, together with her two Burmese friends, was lured into sex trade by a trafficker in the past six months, Bangkok Post reported.
The human trafficker made it possible for them to cross the border at Mae Sai district in Chiang Rai, where a Thai man picked them up.
Based on initial investigations, four prominent people are behind the human trafficking activity in the North, said Pol Lt Col Komvich.
Those who have been lured undergo a ‘trial’ at Chanthaburi’s massage parlours. Once they pass the trial, they will be sent to Bangkok.
The DSI is now hunting down those behind the crime, he told Bangkok Post.