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Jeju to crack down on illegal immigrants

2017/03/02 18:35

JEJU ISLAND, South Korea, March 2 (Yonhap) -- Prosecutors on Jeju Island said Thursday they will carry out an intensive crackdown on foreign nationals illegally staying on the southern resort island until the end of May.

Officials from the prosecution, Coast Guard, immigration office and provincial government held a meeting to discuss measures to deal with a growing number of people staying without a legitimate permit on the island, which allows visa-free entry to foreign visitors.

The agencies decided to carry out a joint crackdown for the next three months. They designated the next two weeks, until March 19, as a period for guidance, during which those who turn themselves in will face mitigated penalties.

Illegal foreigners on Jeju increased 58.5 percent to 7,788 in 2016 from 4,913 in 2015, according to the prosecution.

The number of foreign offenders surged from 350 in 2011 to 335 in 2012, 457 in 2013, 477 in 2014 and 673 in 2015.

The number of foreigners who were banned entry due to a strengthened screening process also increased by 62.4 percent from 7,664 in 2015 to 12,446 in 2016, it said.

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