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Pattaya Daily News

23 February 2013 :: 17:02:02 pm 72241

Treacherous Swedish Trafficker Cheated Poor Thais

Chonburi police arrested a 52-year-old Swedish man who in 2010 had left 168 Thai laborers stranded in Sweden after promising them jobs. He had fled with 25 million baht paid to him upfront by the Thai victims.
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BANGKOK – February 14, 2013 [Pattaya Daily News]; the arrest of a Swedish fugitive on human trafficking charges was announced at the Tourism Police department by Pol. Maj. Gen.Roy Inkpairoj, commander of tourism police; Pol. Col. Atchayon Kraitong, vice commander of tourism police; Pol. Lt. Col. Kueakamol Duangprateep, vice director 3, tourism police department; and Pol. Maj. Col. Bawornpop Sunthornleka, inspector of tourism police, squad 1, tourism police department.

The suspect was identified as Mr. Ari Vekko Juhani Haulikonen, 52 years old, from Sweden. The suspect was wanted by a Swedish warrant, and Thai tourism police and the Swedish police department coordinated to capture him.

The warrant charges that in 2010, Mr. Ari had opened an employment agency company in Thailand to find laborers to work abroad. He recruited 168 Thai laborers to travel to Sweden to work in agriculture fields. The recruited Thai laborers had to borrow money from banks and loan sharks totaling 13 million baht, because Mr. Ari said they needed to pay the initial costs upfront that included their trip and accomodations.

But when they arrived in Sweden, the Thai laborers discovered that no jobs were waiting. Mr. Ari had also escaped with the money they had given him for accomodations and other costs, totaling 24.8 million baht. As a result, the labors were not paid. The Thai victims went to ask for help from the Swedish government, and then they were all sent back home.

Meanwhile, Mr. Ari fled Sweden to avoid prosecution. He re-entered Thailand in 2011 and became a fugitive. He kept moving residences, so it was difficult for authorities to track him down. The Sweden court issued the warrant to arrest him and canceled his passport.

Efforts continued in Thailand to track Mr. Ari down. Then a good citizen reported to police that through the Tourist Buddy Applications, it was revealed that Mr. Ari was currently hiding out in Chonburi. So the police filed a request to the court for his arrest warrant. Officers then went to arrest Mr. Ari while he was hiding out in house number 127/759, moo 3, Samet, Muang, Chonburi.

Pol. Maj. Gen. Roy said that after his arrest, Mr. Are confessed to the charges. He told police he had just opened the recruiting company, and the Thai laborers were the only group he had deceived.

The police informed the suspect that he is initially being charged with being an alien staying in the Kingdom without permission, then controlled him to prosecute. Police also said anyone else who was victimized by Mr. Ari’s scams should come to the police to notify them, so additional charges can be filed.

Photo : Internet   Category : Thailand News

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