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Vendors let off hook by Thai police official

Eleven Cambodian cricket vendors arrested for ‘‘causing anarchy’’ along tourist-populated streets in Thailand were released on the same day following a joint negotiation by Cambodian officials that concluded with a Thai immigration police chief paying the vendors’ fines of 22,000 baht ($627).

According to Sao Veasna, chief of the Border Relations Office in Poipet town, Thai immigration police arrested and imposed a fine of $57 each on the vendors for touting their crickets and fruits, littering and instructing their children to beg from tourists. The vendors were later detained at the district police station in Thailand’s Sa Kaeo province.

“We begged the immigration police, saying the vendors are poor and cannot afford the fines,” Veasna said of the Cambodian officials who joined him in the negotiation, including a policeman and a representative from the Cambodian consulate.

“That is why the immigration police chief understood and paid the fines. I’m not sure if it is from his personal pocket or [the] office.”

The negotiation also led vendors agreeing to set up stalls at designated areas rather than be banned from the country entirely.

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