BANGKOK – Thailand, which faces possible trade sanctions over abuses in its seafood industry, says it has accelerated its fight against human trafficking and unregulated fishing.
Deputy national police chief Thammasak Witcharaya said Monday that in the eight months since a task force was set up to combat fishing industry abuses, it has investigated 36 cases, arrested 102 suspects and rescued 130 presumed trafficking victims. In the 16 months prior to that, only 15 cases were investigated. Trafficking victims in the fishing industry sometimes work in slavery-like conditions.
The EU has warned Thailand, the world's third-largest exporter of seafood, that its seafood may be banned if it fails to institute effective measures against unregulated fishing. The U.S. has called for stronger measures against human trafficking.