Tue, Jan 29, 2013 - Page 4 News List

NIA breaks up transnational passport fraud ring

Staff writer, with CNA

The National Immigration Agency (NIA) on Sunday said it has broken up a passport fraud ring with the help of foreign airport officers based in Taiwan and Thailand.

The 11 members of the ring, all Taiwanese, were arrested on Friday and Saturday upon arrival at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, the agency’s Border Affairs Corps said.

The ring members sold Republic of China (ROC) identity cards and boarding passes to three Chinese and six Nepalese, who were arrested by Thai police trying to travel from Thailand to Italy on Thursday last week using fake ROC passports, the border police said.

The border police said that on Wednesday last week, they collaborated with Australian, US and Canadian airline liaison officers based in Taiwan and Thailand, after an investigation raised suspicions about a group led by a man surnamed Kuo (郭).

Kuo and his accomplices fled Thailand after the arrest of the Chinese and Nepalese, but were caught as they returned to Taiwan.

The ring included a father-daughter pair, who had been offering free trips to Thailand to lure Taiwanese into selling their identity documents and boarding passes for NT$20,000 per deal, the corps said.

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