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ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawVisa NewsAre the Immigration Crackdowns in Thailand Winding Down?

Are the Immigration Crackdowns in Thailand Winding Down?

Transcript of the above video:

In this video today as the title suggests we are going to be discussing Immigration crackdowns yet again and a little bit of analysis as to whether or not the Immigration crackdowns here in Thailand might be sort of losing steam. Maybe we're going to see less of these. As I get through my analysis, it is possible they may be sort of winding down. I also think it is possible that the bulk of the folks that were overstaying or operating illegally in the country, have probably been rounded up or at least a lot of them, and these crackdowns have acted as something of a deterrent to future offenders so we may be seeing less folks who are out of status here in the Kingdom.

But that being said, in a recent article from Thai Rath that is thairath.co.th, that was then translated and put up on Thai Visa, thaivisa.com, the article is titled “Big Joke's latest Crackdown on Foreigners - But has the Fanfare Run Out of Noise?” To quote directly from the article. "Crime Buster Surachet Hakpal, was in Nana, (by the way his nickname is Big Joke. That is his nickname in Thai; that is what they call him), was in Nana, Bangkok early this morning announcing the results of the latest crackdown on illegal foreigners. This was published 25 July 2018. Quoting further, ”but the figures show that the 18th X-ray Outlaw Foreigner drive may have run out of steam". Quoting further, "the Deputy Commissioner of the Tourist Police Bureau said that 62 places had been rated nationwide resulting in 35 arrests of foreigners." Quoting further "Surachet said that three language institutes were targeted, 11 schools and 48 other places. As I have discussed at length on this channel in other videos, the Education Visa is very much falling out of favour with respect for those who are looking for a way to remain in Thailand. It really cannot be used to pretextually anymore and Language Institutes and other types of Educational Institutions that have Ministry of Education approval that can issue visas, in my opinion are very much being targeted by immigration for raids because they do yield people who are on overstay or not in a correct visa status or could be using ED visas pretextually just to remain in the Kingdom but they are not actually attending programs etc. I urge those who are interested in this in further detail, check out this story again. “Big Joke's latest Crackdown on Foreigners - But has the Fanfare Run Out of Noise?” Thaivisa.com has the translated version of that Thai Rath article; I thank them for that translation but there is more to that article I was just taking a few key points out of it for this discussion. 

It does raise a question and I knew that this would probably happen eventually. You know they were going to run out of people to arrest eventually. There is not going to be a perpetual amount of illegals in the Kingdom, illegal aliens in the Kingdom, so that number is going to go down. Again it is probably acting as a deterrent as well but do I think that the initiative has run out of steam? I think it is a little too soon to tell and frankly I am not certain that we might not see some rather more large raids when the high season comes around. I am making this video in late July, 2018. Those who live in Thailand know that the winter months in the west tend to be the so-called High Season here in Thailand. We see a lot of tourists. The other thing is, is we also see a lot of backpackers starting to come through during the winter months as they usually are in other locations especially if they are sort of taking the world tour approach during their so-called gap years or a year off from school or whatever; they tend to come to Thailand in the winter months.   Those are tourists. They are generally not folks that tend to come here to live but some folks that come here with the intention to stay temporarily, oftentimes end up staying longer or sometimes end up staying longer and those folks can find themselves in overstay or trying to use a pretextual visa like an ED when they are not actually attending school and in those cases you would see more for lack of a better term "fish" for the Immigration Officers to go out and corral and, catch and bring in and have these raids show more of a return if you will in terms of arrests etc.

Do I think this is over? No not at all. Do I think that the 18 raids that preceded it are acting as a deterrent to people being in overstay in the Kingdom or being in illegal status in the Kingdom? Yes I certainly think that is the case. I certainly think that this has been acting as a deterrent so folks are not coming to live in Thailand on long-term tourist visas or using 30-day stamps anymore. That has decreased markedly in the past couple of years so that is probably why perhaps the initiatives are running out of steam. But long-term, especially over the course of this coming calendar year, yes I think over high season we are probably going to see some more raids, it just probably going to yield more arrests just from the basic numbers of folks who are in the Kingdom and within those numbers they're going to have a subset of people who are in the Kingdom illegally.