Police in Bangkok have arrested six men and two women for selling firearms on Thai social media. They seized seven guns, ammunition and gun parts.
An extended investigation led to raids on several premises and consequently the arrest of seven accomplices. Bangkok police initially arrested Mr. Pairoh Chanchom, for selling firearms without permission.
The man had sold weapons on Thai social media, Pol Lt Gen Pakkapong Pongpetra, chief of the Bangkok Metropolitan Police Bureau, said during a media briefing on Wednesday.
Guns were seized from several Bangkok homes
Also arrested were Thaweephan Jit-aree; 34, Saksid Kerdmanee, 28; Suriyan Yodsaen, 38; Kamphon Wongsriphuek, 24; and Raen Senaphan, 28; and two women, Intheera Thananwarawong, 43 and Uraiwan Krodsui, 57.
Bangkok Police seized seven firearms, 221 rounds of ammunition and also 38 gun parts. Furthermore they were charged with colluding in illegal possession of firearms. Also selling ammunition and the illegal sale of firearms.
Pol Maj Gen Samran Nuanma, chief of Patrol and Special Operations Division 191, said people should call the 191 hotline if they had information about unlawful activities on social media.
Thai’s love their guns
Thailand has about 10 million privately owned firearms, according to Gunpolicy.org. One for about every seven citizens, of those, about 4 million guns were illegal.
Thais complained on Twitter about their disappearing sense of personal security.
“I can’t say whether Thailand has a gun problem, but it certainly has a gun culture,” said Michael Picard, Research Director of GunPolicy.org of the University of Sydney’s School of Public Health.
“Guns are idolized as symbols of power and privilege, as they are expensive and not easy to legally obtain.”
Thailand had 1,034 gun homicides in 2016, down from 2,234 in 2012. While overall gun violence may be declining, a feeling of insecurity has been growing among citizens in Bangkok.