Half of missing Vietnamese found: Taiwan National Immigration Agency

NIA calls on Vietnamese to come forward

Half of the missing Vietnamese have been found (ph...

Half of the missing Vietnamese have been found (ph...

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) - Half of the more than 100 Vietnamese who disappeared shortly after arriving in Kaohsiung last month have been found, the National Immigration Agency (NIA) said Friday.

A total of 148 went missing shortly after arriving in Taiwan as tourists in a plot believed to have been masterminded by organized crime.

The NIA announced that by 8 a.m. Friday, a total of 74 Vietnamese, or exactly half, had been found, with some of them reporting to the authorities voluntarily and others being arrested by police, the Central News Agency reported.

The NIA was also cooperating with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Taiwanese representative office in Vietnam and its Vietnamese counterpart in Taipei to find out more information about the network behind the disappearance.

Since promising a reward of NT$4,000 (US$129) for information leading to the capture of members of the Vietnamese groups, six had been apprehended, the NIA said in a statement.

The agency called on the remaining 74 Vietnamese to give themselves up, and warned employers they could face fines for giving jobs to the illegals.

On Tuesday, during a search for the missing Vietnamese, police found another illegal from the same country hiding inside a refrigerator inside a building in Taichung.