Thai police foil attempt to smuggle 400kg of 'ice' to Malaysia

BANGKOK: Thai police busted an attempt to smuggle 400kg of "Ice" (form of methamphetamine) to Malaysia estimated to be worth 804 million Baht (RM100 million) with the arrest of 11 syndicate members, including three women, on July 28 and 31.

Three of the suspects, two sisters, aged 20 and 28, and a 43-year-old male companion who were regular travellers to Malaysia were arrested in Hatyai on July 31.

"The three suspects were part of the syndicate which specialises in smuggling drugs using Sungai Golok. From their travel documents obtained by the authorities, the three were regular travellers to Malaysia," Narcotics Suppression Bureau (NSB) chief, Lt Gen Sommai Kongvisaisuk told Bernama, here today.

According to him, the three suspects arrested in Hatyai were from Narathiwat and played a key role in facilitating the smuggling of drugs into Malaysia.

Sommai said the drug, neatly packaged as tea product, was stuffed inside a four-wheel-drive vehicle before being smuggled into Thailand from Laos.
Upon receiving intelligence information, a group of officers stopped the drug-carrying vehicle at 4am on July 28 at a resort in Khonkaen province, near the Laos border and arrested five Thai nationals, four men and a woman.

The five suspects, aged between 22 and 47 years, originate from Nong Khai and Petchaboon, in north and northeastern Thailand.

"They were supposed to bring the drug from Nong Khai to central Thailand and Hatyai before smuggling it across the border into Malaysia," he said, adding that the arrest of the three suspects in Hatyai was the result of a follow-up operation to the arrest of the five earlier.

Sommai said in another follow-up operation, three more Thai nationals were picked up in Nong Khai and Rayong.

He said the authorities also seized various assets belonging to the syndicate such as plots of land, houses, cars and bank accounts amounting to 18 million Baht (RM2.25 million). — Bernama