National

55th Thai trip draws human trafficking bust

Kyodo

Thai police arrested a Japanese man Thursday night upon his arrival at Bangkok’s international airport from Tokyo and charged him with human trafficking, a police source said Friday.

Yoshiyuki Misawa, 32, allegedly trafficked Thai women to Japan for the sex trade, the Crime Suppression Bureau source said.

A 22-year-old Thai woman filed a grievance against Misawa earlier this year, saying he sent her to a karaoke bar in Nagoya where she was forced to have sex with customers, the source said, adding that an arrest warrant for him was issued last Saturday.

The woman told police that she was locked up at the karaoke bar and also tortured there, but managed to escape and sought shelter at the Thai Embassy in Tokyo, which arranged for her return to Thailand.

The source said police do not know how many women Misawa trafficked to Japan, but he said the suspect frequently traveled between Thailand and Japan. “Only in the last two months, he made 54 trips in and out of the kingdom,” police said.

Under a law to fight human trafficking, Misawa faces a possible penalty of one to 10 years in prison and a fine ranging from 20,000 baht ($487) up to 200,000 baht.

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