Dec. 24 (UPI) -- Nepalese police said Tuesday they arrested 122 Chinese nationals who entered the country on tourist and student visas on suspicion of committing financial fraud and cybercrimes.
Metropolitan Police Crime Division Senior Superintendent Sahakul Thapa said the suspects were rounded up during a raid executed Monday throughout the capital city of Kathmandu.
"We arrested them as their visa term has already expired," he said.
Police chief Uttam Subedi said the suspects were conducting cybercrime and hacking bank machines.
"This is the first time that so many foreigners have been detained for suspected criminal activities," he said, adding that their electronic devices and passports had been confiscated.
The suspects were arrested from seven buildings where they were living in rented apartments, authorities said.
Most of the suspects were in Nepal on tourist visas, Subedi said, adding a few were there on student visas.
"But they were not engaged in touristic activities," he said. "Anyone who enters Nepal on [a] tourist visa should stay here like a tourist."
Police initially reported that 72 Chinese nationals had been implicated in the scheme, but the number increased as authorities discovered more people who were involved.
The arrests follow police in the Philippines last week detaining 342 Chinese nationals working for an offshore gambling operator in connection to cybercrime and online fraud.
In September, police arrested five Chinese nationals in connection to a scheme to steal money from bank machines, confiscating some 130 forge credit cards, 17 authentic credit cards, six mobile phones and a laptop.