The government is seeking legal representation and possible pardons for 24 Cambodians who were arrested last week for entering Thailand using fake passports, according to a Foreign Affairs Ministry statement released on Tuesday.
The group was arrested in Thailand’s Sa Kaeo province, which borders Poipet, with 22 having crossed the border in search of migrant work and two others having been “involved” in the migration process, the statement said.
“Each of them spent 2,500 baht for a passport and an additional 1,000 baht each for travel expenses to their destinations,” it said, for a total of about $103. “The Cambodian Consulate office in Sa Kaeo province is looking for volunteers to represent all 24 and is seeking the consideration of amnesty.”
The statement added that the group was being detained in prison, but was being provided fair treatment.
In a separate case, 11 Cambodians were repatriated to Cambodia by bus from Laos about a month after illegally migrating to the neighboring country, a statement released by the ministry on Monday said.
Ministry spokesman Chum Sounry could not be reached.
Prum Sokha, director of the Interior Ministry’s passport department, said he was unaware of either case.
“Since the new version of passports has been issued, there hasn’t been any information about fake passports,” he said, adding that any investigation would fall to the ministry.