BANGKOK, Jan. 31 (Xinhua) -- Thailand's authorities are continuing to hunt for over 8,000 foreigners who have allegedly overstayed in this country, according to Defense Ministry spokesman Lt. Gen. Kongcheep Tantrawanich.
Those foreigners, suspected to have illegally overstayed in varied spots throughout Thailand, might possibly have been involved in crimes or any outlawed activities only to smear this country's image in the eye of the international community, the spokesman said on Wednesday.
Defense Minister Prawit Wongsuwan had ordered the authorities to locate and arrest the 8,000-plus suspected overstayers in addition to a number of others who may have illegally entered this country, he said.
Those illegal aliens, mostly of who came from Asia, Africa and Europe, will not only be arrested but have all their wealth confiscated by the authorities, he said.
They are believed to be currently hiding out in and around major tourist spots such as Pattaya, Phuket, Hua Hin, Koh Samui island and Bangkok, among other whereabouts throughout the country.
Meanwhile, the authorities have stepped up measures to combat cross-border drug trafficking amidst news reports that a very large volume of methamphetamine and other drugs have been produced in Myanmar's Shan state and destined to be smuggled into Thai territory.
Millions of methamphetamine tablets have been seized and many suspected traffickers have been arrested by the authorities over the last several months.