“Model trafficking” has taken the latest hit in Thailand’s series of crackdowns on visa violations. Thailand is a popular destination for models, where many come cloaked as tourists and take on modeling gigs but avoid taxes by not obtaining a work permit.
Foreign faces are high in demand and some Thai modeling firms are willing to pay a whopping 50,000 baht (1,400 US dollars) per hour of modeling work.
Photo Credit: Tverdohlib
Many models hail from countries such as Ukraine, Brazil, Israel and other European countries and a portion of them are also underage, reported the Bangkok Post.
Out of concern that foreign models are stealing jobs from Thais, the Thai Modeling Industry and Agencies Association and Thailand’s Department of Employment this month teamed up for a campaign to encourage Thai modeling agencies to run their businesses legally and avoid hiring foreigners without work permits.
Unlicensed foreign models are considered a violation of the country’s Foreign Workers Employment Act and could face a five-year jail term or a fine between 2000 and 100,000 baht, or both. In addition, model agencies are looking a fine of 10,000 to 100,000 baht for each model illegally hired, with those who hire underage models at risk of being doubly charged with using child labour and forced labour.
So beware, you might be stunning and beautiful but that would not be an excuse to get jail time.