Thailand’s Narcotics police officers have seized 176 Kilo’s of crystal meth hidden in the metal frames of treadmills bound for Japan.
“Last month, the Australian police busted a similar case with the drugs hidden in exercise equipment, which they told us was packaged and exported from Thailand,” said Police Major-General Yingyot Thepchamnong, head of the Narcotics Suppression Bureau, on Thursday.
“So, we followed up in the belief there must be other cases.”
He said officers at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport on Tuesday discovered 36kgs of crystal meth stashed in exercise equipment among air cargo bound for Japan. They then tracked the shipment back to the warehouse.
During the raid on the warehouse, police found a further 140kgs of crystal meth inside the frames of treadmills.
One person was arrested following the raid, though Yingyot said police believe more suspects were involved.
Thailand is a major trafficking route for crystal meth manufactured in Myanmar’s Shan state, which borders Chiang Rai province in Northern Thailand. The area notoriously known as the Golden Triangle.
The crystal meth market in the Golden Triangle has expanded at an alarming rate. Drug seizures have surged more than tenfold over the past two years, official statistics show.
The United Nations estimates that the Asia-Pacific methamphetamine trade alone was worth as much as $61.4bn in 2018. Up from an estimated $15bn just five years earlier