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Red Card Immigration System | Phuket

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  • Red Card Immigration System | Phuket

    Phuket Immigration with ‘Red Card’ System for wayward Foreigners

    Phuket immigration is launching a ‘red card’ system for wayward foreigners which will see them deported after two offences. Praphansak Prasansuk, Commander of the Immigration Region 6 office, announced the system yesterday.

    “Under the system, a foreigner will be designated a ‘yellow card’ for a first offence. The foreigner will be issued a formal warning and the relevant embassy will be notified.”
    When the foreigner leaves the country after completing the current stay, he/she will be denied entry on the next visit due to their unlawful act that “caused trouble and behaved [in a way] that is a threat to society.”
    If the foreigner is found guilty of a second offence during the same period of stay, Praphansak says the foreigner’s permit will be revoked and will be deported to their home country. But, according to Phuket News, Praphansak did not specify what was considered an “unlawful act” or the level of crime committed that would be considered a first or second offence. At the press conference, such offences as not wearing a helmet, dangerous driving, and not having the correct driver’s licence were mentioned.

    Officials also announced recent arrests of foreigners, who were caught breaking the law, under the ‘Phuket Crime-Free’ campaign. Meanwhile, over 7,000 Russians in Phuket are applying for visa extensions in a bid to stay in Thailand. Local immigration chief, Thanet Sukchai, says the great weather is one factor in their attempts to stay. An average of 300,000 foreigners enter the island per month, with that number continuing to rise in lieu of the Covid-19 pandemic being considered mostly over.

    As Russians hold the top spot in tourism numbers to Phuket, India, Kazakhstan, England and Australia visitors follow. Thanet says a total of 31,128 foreign nationals are seeking to extend their stay in Phuket. He says immigration police have adjusted to the influx of foreign visitors, launching a so-called “white accommodation” project. The project features crime and drug-free accommodation to ensure the safety of foreigners and local residents.

  • #2
    Phuket’s Red Card Immigration System

    Phuket Immigration has announced those punished with their new yellow card and red card system for misbehaving foreigners. The new trial system was established to combat claims that law-breaking foreigners didn’t know the rules so, much like a football game, Phuket Immigration has implemented a yellow and red card system as a warning system. If a foreigner commits an offence for the first time, they will receive a yellow card, and their behaviour will be reported to consulates. If they repeat the offence, they will receive a red card and their visa will be withdrawn, and they will be deported. Information was typically vague as to what offences and actions could earn these cards.

    This month so far, two foreigners received red cards and four received yellow cards. Authorities also note that 181 foreigners are currently involved in criminal cases and working their way through the legal process. According to Phuket Immigration, most of the foreigners involved in these cases are from Russia, France, the UK, Myanmar and Cambodia. The majority of cases are located in Patong. The most common offences involve drunk driving, overstaying, illegally entering the kingdom and working without a permit.

    Phuket Immigration has adapted the football-like card system, explaining that a red card results in the suspension of one’s visa with immediate departure from Thailand. The severity of the offence determines the length of the ban on re-entry to Thailand. A large number of foreigners who come to Phuket are not well-versed in Thai customs and regulations, according to Phuket Immigration. Consequently, many of them claim they were unaware of the laws or regulations broken, and the consequences of their actions. Many use the defence of having seen others doing the same without punishment, so they assumed they could do the same without consequences.

    Phuket Immigration has made clear that what others do or what others are caught for is irrelevant., and the only consideration in punishment is the individual’s actions. Travellers are responsible for being familiar with the laws of the countries they visit. The police or immigration is not obligated to teach each arriving tourist all the laws and regulations.

    The trial card program, currently operational in Phuket only, could potentially be extended to other tourist hotspots like Pattaya, Chiang Mai, and Koh Samui should it prove effective. Still, several uncertainties still surround the initiative, including which actions and infractions would result in the issuance of yellow cards. Phuket Immigration responded with the assurance that abiding by Thailand’s laws and regulations should keep foreign visitors out of trouble. They noted that their statistics suggest that very few tourists and foreigners would ever get into trouble serious enough to merit a yellow or red card.


    • #3
      Dutch woman arrested at Phuket Airport for illegally entering Thailand

      A 28 year old Dutch woman was arrested at Phuket International Airport on the weekend for entering and staying in Thailand without permission or a visa. The unnamed woman was taken to Sakhu Police Station to face charges of entering and staying in Thailand illegally. It’s not clear how she managed to enter the kingdom. Under Phuket Immigration’s new yellow and red card system for bad foreigners, first-time foreign offenders in Phuket will receive a yellow card and repeat offenders will receive a red card, leading to their deportation. Red cards void the foreigner’s visa, but since the Dutch woman doesn’t have a visa, her offence is still a deportable one – even if it is her first.

      Phuket Police also recently announced the arrest of a 30 year old Cambodian tour guide, Sothy Roth Sam Oeurn, for illegally operating a tour business, being a tour guide and working without permission. In the early hours of Monday morning, a brawl erupted between five foreign tourists and three foreign staff members at Atlas Restaurant on Soi Sansabai in the Patong area of Phuket. The fight was caught on camera. The fight allegedly began because the foreign tourists were drunk and became enraged when they were told to wait in line for their food like everyone else. The foreign tourists allegedly threw a bottle into the restaurant, prompting the foreign staff – Egyptian, Jordanian, and Burmese – to fight back with poles, chairs, kitchen utensils and other makeshift weapons.

      When police arrived, the foreign tourists fled and only the three staff were present to tell their side of the events to the police. It’s not clear whether the staff were criminally charged. Police have apparently located the five foreign tourists and summoned them to the police station but there has been no further update about whether the brawl warranted any red or yellow cards. Since the start of 2023, there have been more than 181 cases of foreigners being charged with criminal offences. Most of the offences happen in Patong and involve drunk driving, overstaying, illegally entering Thailand and working without a permit.

      According to Phuket Immigration, most of the criminal foreigners come from Russia, France, the UK, Myanmar and Cambodia. Should Phuket see success with its red and yellow card system, the policy may be expanded to other tourist hotspots such as Pattaya, Chiang Mai and Koh Samui – where foreigners are also partial to misbehaving.

      Last edited by Topgun; 03-29-2023, 03:04 PM.