In your travels throughout Korea, it’s not uncommon to see storefront signs for 태국마사지 (Thai Massage), which has gained popularity over the years. To instill an air of authenticity, Koreans would bring in Thais to come work there and knead weary backs. Prices for traditional Wat Pho massage ranges from 60-100,000 won. The challenge for the Korean owners of these establishments is getting the Thai masseuses on a legal working visa. Especially given that many of these massage places opt to keep things on the down low and do not bother getting a government license to operate a massage parlor.
So the recourse is using brokers who you can pay 2 million won to and he’ll set the Thai masseuse up in a sham marriage in Korea, which will enable her to work on an F-2 spousal visa.
Well, someone must have gotten a raw deal along the way and opened their mouth, as Daegu police busted a local racket, where the broker, a handful of Korean massage parlor owners, and a bunch of Thais now find themselves in the clink.
Gotta love Korea’s famed broker culture and their penchant for circumventing laws. Brokered marriage for Filipino brides and Korean farmers, teacher recruiters, brokers for SE Asian factory workers, Thai masseuse brokers, etc…