Thai and Malaysian police cracking down on a cross-border call-centre scam ring have arrested five Taiwanese suspects and rescued 11 Thais being held at a commercial building in Kuala Lampur.
The Thais, detained against their will, had been forced to make the deceitful calls duping respondents out of their money.
A senior police officer told reporters at Suvarnabhumi International Airport on Tuesday night the Malaysian police were currently questioning the suspects and their enslaved employees.
Among the suspects apprehended in the Malaysian capital’s Sri Petaling area, three were the subjects of outstanding Thai arrest warrants.
Pol Lt-General Thanitsak Thiraswadi, a special adviser to the Royal Thai Police, said the three are believed to be members of a phone-scam gang led by Taiwanese Zhu Yi De, who is also being sought.
Deputy Tourist Police chief Maj Gen Surachet Hakpan said the Kuala Lumpur raid followed another joint police operation against call-centre scammers in Cambodia, in which 26 Thais, six Taiwanese and five Cambodians were arrested.
Thai police want the 26 Thais extradited so it can be determined if any of them were involved involuntarily.
Police said two Thai men, ages 39 and 23 – who were rescued in Kuala Lumpur on January 26 while making calls for the gang under duress – had already returned to Thailand.
They had provided additional information for the ongoing search for guilty parties.