AYUTTHAYA – Deputy National Police Commissioner Pol General Chalermkiat Srivorakan told the press at the Metropolitan Police Bureau on Sunday that a 34-year-old Chiang Rai man was arrested on Saturday night and drugs worth Bt2.2 billion allegedly seized from him in Ayutthaya province.
The 10.33 million methamphetamine pills, some 100 kilograms of crystal meth or “ice” and 100 kilograms of ketamine were hidden in beer boxes loaded onto a six-wheel truck’s canvas-covered cargo bed. The suspect, identified only as Ed, was driving on Asia Highway’s 19th kilometre marker in Tambon Khlong Suan Plu in Phra Nakhon Sri Ayutthaya district when he was stopped by police at 9pm on Saturday.
As the man also reportedly had bought a house and a truck in cash, police would ask the Anti-Money Laundering Office to trace his transactions to seize ill-gotten assets, the senior police said.
Citing that the drugs carried the logo “999” and “Y1” of the Northern and Southern Wa hill tribal groups respectively, which are based in a neighbouring country, Chalermkiat said the drug trafficking gang had contracted Ed to moved the drugs to a storage in a province close to Bangkok before distributing them to customers later.
Pol Maj-General Itthipol Atchariyapradit, Metropolitan Police Bureau chief investigator, said the major drug bust stemmed from a previous confiscation of 700 kilograms of “ice” in Ayutthaya from two suspects on October 4th.
Ed said he used to work as a scavenger in Chiang Rai and turned to the job of transporting drugs on the invitation of a hill tribe friend. He said he had done this once before and got paid Bt25,000.
Police, however, did not believe his testimony because their investigation found he had bought a house and a truck in cash. He was charged with being in possession of illicit drugs with intent to sell, Itthipol said.
By Kornkamon Aksorndech