Interloper from Vietnam apprehended in Daegu

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Interloper from Vietnam apprehended in Daegu

The Vietnamese man who forced his way through immigration at Incheon International Airport last week to steal into the country was apprehended by local authorities Wednesday afternoon in Daegu.

The arrest of the 25-year-old foreigner, made by a joint team of officials from the Korea Immigration Service, Incheon International Airport and Daegu police, came five days after he entered the country illegally through its busiest airport by forcing his way through an unmanned automated immigration checkpoint.

Authorities said the suspect was found in his friend’s studio apartment. The friend, a legal Vietnamese immigrant, was also arrested. They were both transferred to Seoul for further investigation.

Daegu is the country’s fourth largest city located 238 kilometers (148 miles) southeast of Seoul.

The suspect’s motive for stealing into the country was unknown by press time Wednesday.

According to the airport, the suspect arrived at the airport at 5:05 a.m. Friday from the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi on a Korean Air flight and was suppose to transfer to a flight to Japan’s Narita International Airport at 10:10 a.m.

Airport officials discovered he was missing when he didn’t board his onward flight and alerted the Korea Immigration Service about 25 minutes later at 10:35 a.m.

The unmanned immigration lanes at the airport, through which frequent travelers can enter the country using their passports and biometrics like fingerprints, was supposed to be manned with a security watchman but wasn’t.

On Jan. 26, a Chinese married couple was arrested in Cheonan, South Chungcheong, some 90 kilometers south of Seoul, after stealing into Korea by using a screwdriver to break open a locked door at Incheon International Airport on Jan. 21.

They claimed they were looking to find work in Korea and that a Chinese broker who illegally migrated to Korea helped them. The alleged broker has yet to be found.

BY LEE SUNG-EUN [lee.sungeun@joongang.co.kr]

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