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Laos hands over 280 Chinese nationals to China for suspected online fraud

Laos police has handed over 280 Chinese nationals to Chinese police after they were detained following their suspected involvement in online fraud.

The group was deported at the Boten-Bohan border crossing in Luang Namtha province, under the supervision of the Deputy Director of the Immigration and Foreigners Management Police Department, Lieutenant Colonel Soutchai Inthongxay, and his Chinese counterpart.

The suspects were alleged to have operated a fraudulent call centre in the Golden Triangle Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Tonpheung district, Bokeo province, a Chinese enclave that is renowned for various leisure activities including a grandiose casino and is frequented mostly by Chinese tourists and business operators.

A total of 280 Chinese nationals were deported, while police impounded 1,345 mobile phones and 458 desktop computers used at the call centre. The call centre was allegedly used to carry out scams that involved various forms of deception with the aim of conning victims into handing over sums of money.

Security officials in the Golden Triangle SEZ teamed up with military personnel in the area, Chinese police, and the Golden Triangle SEZ to make the arrests.

The crackdown was part of efforts to establish law and order in the SEZ Special Economic Zone.

Last year, police handed over 164 Chinese nationals to Chinese police at Wattay International Airport after they were detained following their suspected involvement in online fraud.

The group included 77 people who were apprehended in Vientiane, 46 in the Golden Triangle SEZ, 22 in Savannakhet province, and 19 in Vientiane province.

The Lao and Chinese ministries signed a document to certify the return of the suspects from Laos to China, based on a Memorandum of Cooperation signed between the Ministry of Public Security of Laos and the Ministry of Public Security of China last year. The Star

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