A taxi in Taiwan similar to the one the woman took from the airport. Photo: AFP

Three Vietnamese women were detained on Wednesday at Tainan Airport for attempting to enter Taiwan using false passports, but one managed to slip away, leave the airport and was arrested in town 12 hours later.

The three Vietnamese women arrived at Tainan from Ho Chi Minh City and said they planned to go sightseeing on the island country, The Liberty Times reported.

However, immigration officers found their passports were either stolen or forged. They were arrested and escorted to the National Immigration Agency office in Kaohsiung International Airport, pending repatriation.

However one of the women, a 40-year-old, managed to sneak into a crowd of travelers and jumped into a taxi heading to Taipei while officers were busy arranging tickets for their repatriation.

About 12 hours later, Taiwan police managed to locate the woman at a residence in Neihu district in Taipei City. She had disguised herself and changed her hair and clothes.

A preliminary investigation found she had visited Taiwan early this year and had no prior record. The Taiwan Kaohsiung District Prosecutors Office will launch an investigation into the women and also whether negligence was involved by National Immigration Agency officers who lost a suspect in custody.

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