Burmese Trafficker Arrested

 | Wed 25 Jun 2014 17:06 ICT

CityNews – The “Boss” of a Burmese human trafficking ring, who targeted young children, has been arrested in Bangkok.  Maung Miang, aged 22, was arrested at his home, in the Chana Songkhram sub-district of Phra Nakhon district in Bangkok on Friday morning, June 20th.

This may be the start of a crackdown by the Thai government, following Thailand’s poor assessment and blacklisting by the US and EU. Thailand has now been given the lowest rank possible in terms of its actions against human trafficking, as we reported here.

Muang Miang confessed that he had bought three children from Burma (allegedly paying their families $50/1,623 Baht) and made about 30,000 baht ($1,000) per month from their labour. He claimed he transferred 150,000 kyats ($150) to the children’s mother every month. Pol.Col. Chitpop Tomuan, a superintendent of the AHTD, reported “From what the child told us, there was a transaction between the parents and the dealer beforehand,” .

Many Burmese families living illegally in western Thailand’s border towns sell their children out of financial desperation, Mr. Witanapat, head of anti-trafficking organisation The Mirror Foundation  said. It is common for them to live in extreme poverty after fleeing Myanmar to escape ethnic and religious persecution.

Mr. Witanapat explained how “Most of them start with an agreement of how much money they will they get monthly and when the kid will be back,” , however in many cases the child loses contact with its family, and is never returned.  Payments allegedly cease after a few months.