Massive transfer of suspected criminals involved in telecom fraud from Myanmar to mainland China: “Blindfolded and in rows” spectacle at multiple high-speed railway stations


21st November 2023 – (Kokang) Following the declaration of a “crackdown on telecom fraud” by the Northern Alliance Army in northern Myanmar, the city of Kokang has accelerated the repatriation of Chinese nationals, resulting in scenes of large-scale escorting at various railway stations. These images have garnered praise from many netizens, who hailed it as a successful operation. Regarding the handling of the individuals, Chinese authorities stated that, depending on the circumstances, they would generally be detained for a period of 30 days.

According to a report by Phoenix Weekly, the liquidation of the Northern Myanmar telecom fraud syndicates has commenced. Since the Northern Alliance Army announced the “crackdown on telecom fraud” over a month ago, the main base of operations for telecom fraud in northern Myanmar has suffered heavy damage. The gates of the fraud compound have been opened, and there have been multiple expressions of intent to repatriate the fraudsters back to China.

Numerous images have emerged of a large number of Myanmar telecom fraud suspects being repatriated. At the railway stations in Hefei and Wuhu, Anhui Province, armed police officers can be seen escorting suspects wearing black hoods and yellow vests, marching in orderly rows up the escalators. On the open ground of the stations, the suspects are bound with their hands behind their backs, arranged neatly in rows, and closely guarded by a large number of armed police officers.

Another video captured on a high-speed train shows entire train carriages filled with escort teams. Each row of three seats accommodates two suspects accompanied by one police officer. It is reported that the number of repatriated telecom fraud suspects in this wave has exceeded ten thousand.

Yunnan, located at the border, has also received a large number of Myanmar telecom fraud suspects. According to police reports, just in the city of Baoshan alone, there are 150 individuals, some of whom were rescued, while others were released voluntarily due to pressure.

Regarding the treatment of these repatriated suspects, the police have stated that a review process will be carried out. Those suspected of illegal activities will be subject to corresponding measures, which may include “administrative detention or criminal detention, generally for about 30 days.” After the 30-day period, individuals involved in more severe cases will undergo further review by the prosecutor’s office.

Rumours have circulated regarding the involvement of celebrities, including Eric Tsang, in celebrating the birthday of the head of the Northern Myanmar fraud syndicate, Bai Yingcang. A representative of the implicated artist’s management company has responded to these allegations.

In recent days, the governments of Myanmar and China have collaborated closely to actively dismantle the Northern Myanmar fraud syndicates and apprehend the “Four Major Families” of Kokang. As the conflict intensifies, emergency notices were issued in Longyan, Fujian Province, and other areas on November 19th, stating that the Northern Alliance Army, Myanmar government forces, and local armed groups have been engaged in intense fighting in the vicinity of Laogai, a region near Kokang. The Northern Alliance Army has now advanced to Laogai and there is a risk of significant casualties.

The notice urges immediate reporting to local communities by relatives and key individuals who are stranded in the northern Myanmar region. At the same time, it advises all individuals stranded abroad to establish contact with their families and promptly return to China to ensure their safety.