Mekong drug bust: methamphetamine seizure valued at 20 million baht

Photo via Facebook/กองกำลังสุรศักดิ์มนตรี/กองอำนวยการรักษาความมั่นคงภายใน ภาค ๒ ส่วนแยก ๑

A sack of methamphetamine tablets, valued around 20 million baht, smuggled in tea packets, was seized along the bank of the Mekong River in north-east Thailand, a notorious drug trafficking route.

A longtail boat pulled up to the shore of the Isaan province Mukdahan around 3am yesterday and the driver threw the sack onto the riverbank. Rangers and police, who had been tipped off about a drug shipment coming in from Laos, immediately moved in and the boat sped off.

Inside the sack was 21 green packets labelled Guanyinwang tea. Each packet had 1 kilogram of methamphetamine, according to police and rangers. Soldiers from the Ranger Company 2110 teamed up with police from the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Division for the operation.

The Mekong River is a notorious route for the drug trade between Laos and Thailand. Drug trade across the river has been under ongoing watch by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Recently, the UNODC teamed up with Thai authorities for a 2-day assessment on trafficking patterns and organised crime along the Thai-Laos border.

UNODC Regional Representative Jeremy Douglas says the drugs are often moved from the Golden Triangle, which is the area where Myanmar, Laos and Thailand meet.

“The Laos border is being heavily used by traffickers to move drugs from the Golden Triangle into Thailand and then onwards for the regional and inter-regional drug trade, especially crystal methamphetamine, but also ketamine and heroin. Trafficking of people and the smuggling of migrants, as well as illicit wildlife and timber trafficking, are also major challenges in the northeast, and precursor chemicals are going back the other way for illicit drug production in Myanmar.”

There have been numerous drug busts along the Mekong River. Recently, police seized 920 kilograms of dried, compressed cannabis from a boat on the Mekong River near the Nakhon Phanom shore. The next day, officers seized another 500 kilograms of cannabis in the same province. Police suspect the cannabis also came across the Mekong River from Laos.

ทหารพรานกองกำลังสุรศักดิ์มนตรี สนธิกำลังร่วมกับหน่วยงานความมั่นคงในพื้นที่…

Posted by กองกำลังสุรศักดิ์มนตรี/กองอำนวยการรักษาความมั่นคงภายใน ภาค ๒ ส่วนแยก ๑ on Wednesday, March 24, 2021


SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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