CHIANG RAI – Narcotics suppression police have shot and killed a drug trafficker after an exchanged firefight erupted while the suspect tried to flee arrest, 15 million methamphetamine pills were found in his vehicle, in Wiang Chai district on Thursday night.
Narcotics suppression police supported by soldiers watching a secondary road from northern border areas in Chiang Saen district to Wiang Chai district ordered a Toyota pickup truck to stop about 11pm. Instead, the driver sped off, firing shots at them as he fled.
Soldiers and police returned fired, hitting the driver causing his vehicle to lose control and hit a roadside ditch in tambon Wiang Nuea of Wiang Chai district.
Upon approaching the vehicle police found the driver was dead, he was carrying an ID card with the name Anat Jirawatpakdee, 30.
Drug suppression officers recovered a total of 75 sacks filled with approximately 15 million meth pills that were in the back of the truck.
Pol Lt Gen Chinnaphat Sarasin, chief of the Narcotics Suppression Bureau (NSB), told the Bangkok Post that they revived a tipoff that a large quantity of illicit drugs would be smuggled from a border area in Chiang Saen district to the Central Region via downtown Muang district on Thursday night.
He said they learned the smugglers would be using a secondary road to avoid security checkpoints.
The police linked this seizure to the network of Anucha Phakit-udom, who was extra- judicially killed on Dec 4 in Chiang Rai’s Doi Luang district, about 6.1 million meth pills were seized.
Meanwhile, in the southern province of Songkhla, the police raided a house in Hat Yai district and seized 400,000 meth pills and 10 kgs of crystal meth with the street value of 45 million baht.
Peerapat Saekuai was arrested. He confessed being hired by a major drug trafficker to transport the illegal drug from Chiang Rai. He stored the drugs at his house before sending to the drug network in Songkhla and three southern border provinces.
He said he did it twice and was paid 70,000 baht.
Video by PR.Chiangrai Facebook shows senior police officers examining the seized drugs