According to Kyaw Kyaw Lwin, the labor attaché at the Myanmar Embassy in Bangkok, a man who attempted to rape a Myanmar migrant worker in Samut Prakan Province on November 3 was intercepted by police the same evening, and is now being held at the Bang Phli police office.
The attack happened at approximately 5:30 PM on Sunday, November 3, after the Myanmar woman finished her shift at the Summit Foot Wear factory. Once she retired to her room in the factory’s residence quarters, the suspect broke in and forced himself upon her, but she was able to escape and ran to a neighbor for help.
“We filed a report with the local police the same evening, after we were informed of the attack. Once police speak with the victim to get her report, we will then move forward with the prosecution,” said Kyaw Kyaw Lwin.
The suspect is a Thai man whose wife works as an office worker at the Summit Foot Wear factory where the migrant woman is employed.
Nearly 800 Myanmar migrant workers gathered in front of the factory at 8 PM the same evening. The crowd demanded that the Thai man be fully prosecuted, and destroyed some of the factory’s equipment during their protest.
Kyaw Kyaw Lwin, officials from the Myanmar Migrant Worker Rights Network, and Buddhist monk Asan Zaw Ti Ka from the Aung Tapyay monastery visited the factory during the unrest to help alleviate migrant workers’ concerns.
“We want to prevent people from pointing fingers at one another. The embassy will take care of the prosecution in this case. I would like to make sure the workers are satisfied,” said Asan Zaw Ti Ka.
According to one migrant worker at the Summit Foot Wear Company, this isn’t the first time attacks against migrant workers have occurred, and that suspects in previous incidents were never properly prosecuted. In the future, the source suggested, governments from both countries should participate to ensure criminals who attack migrant workers are put through the judicial process.
The worker also mentioned that because of past examples, many migrant workers are skeptical this case will be fully prosecuted.
There are about 3000 Myanmar migrants working at the Summit Foot Wear company, with most working at the company’s location in Samut Prakan Province. Most Myanmar migrants in Thailand are working in the fisheries, salt, agriculture, trading and factory industries.