CHIANGRAI – Early Friday morning Chiang Rai Drug Suppression Police arrested three Hmong men and seized 2.2 million methamphetamine pills and 50 kilograms of “ice”, with a total street value of more than 1.2 billion baht.
Pol Col Noppadon Nilmanont, head of special drug suppression force in Chiang Rai, said police were tipped off that there would be an attempt to smuggle a large amount of illegal drugs into Thailand through the nearby border. They set up checkpoints on the Mae Chan-Chiang Saen road late last night.
Slightly after midnight, police spotted eight pickup trucks and signaled them to stop, but all the vehicles sped away.
Drug Suppression officers followed them for 15 kilometers into the Mae Chan district area and managed to stop two pickups.
Police said the drug traffickers began shooting at police, who fired back.
One man on a pickup truck was shot and injured, and fell beside his vehicle. He was later identified as Prateep Sae Yang, a resident of Chiang Rai’s Terng district.
One of two men in another pickup truck threw a hand grenade at police, however it failed to explode. The two men – Saridej Sea Thao, a resident of Chiang Rai’s Wiang Kaen district, and Sitthichai Sae Yang of Terng district were immediately arrested.
Police said one of the pickups, with the Bangkok license plate No 4641, was carrying six fertilizer sacks containing 2.2 million methamphetamine pills and 50 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine.