Myanmar and China Arrest 800 in Joint Crackdown on Cross-Border Scams

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Joint Myanmar-China Operation Targets Cross-Border Scammers

In a significant joint operation, Myanmar and China have arrested over 800 individuals suspected of involvement in cross-border scams. The operation, conducted in the northern Shan state, targeted scam compounds that have proliferated in Myanmar, often employing foreign nationals to defraud their compatriots.

The operation, which took place in late March, resulted in the arrest of 807 individuals, including 352 Chinese citizens. Myanmar police seized computers, mobile phones, and "fraud scripts" during the raids. The Chinese citizens arrested were subsequently transferred to China, while the remaining Myanmar nationals are facing legal proceedings.

This joint operation reflects the growing concern over the prevalence of cross-border scams in Myanmar. These scams, often targeting individuals in China, have generated significant profits for criminal organizations. The operation also highlights the ongoing cooperation between Myanmar and China, despite the international community's condemnation of the Myanmar junta's human rights abuses.

The operation follows previous efforts by the Myanmar authorities to crack down on scam compounds. Last year, the United Nations estimated that at least 120,000 people were being held in such compounds, primarily in the town of Laukkai. An alliance of ethnic minority armed groups has since captured Laukkai and pledged to eliminate the scam compounds.

The joint operation between Myanmar and China represents a significant step towards dismantling the cross-border scam networks operating in Myanmar. However, the long-term effectiveness of these efforts remains uncertain, particularly given the complex political and economic dynamics in the region.

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May 21, 2023 | 05:09