Sections: CrimeThailand

Police bust online rifle ring

Police arrested 3 people yesterday for illegally making and selling firearms online, as well as 45 customers. In separate, coordinated raids, they seized 120 guns and more than 2,200 cartridges,  breaking up a network operating in 39 of Thailand’s 76 provinces.

The commander of the Crime Suppression Division said today that a series of raids targetted premises in 39 provinces yesterday. Police seized 120 homemade .22 rifles, 2,216 cartridges, 82 gun barrels, 9 sets of trigger and bolt mechanisms, 31 trigger guards, 39 magazines and 12 rifle stocks.

The commander said the raids were the culmination of an investigation into a fatal shooting in Suphan Buri province, northwest of Bangkok. Detectives learned that the gun used was bought through the “Jai Jeb Jeb Jai” (Aching Heart) Facebook page, which had about 50,000 followers, and over 500,000 followers on its YouTube channel.

CSD Commander Jirapop Puridet identified the 3 suspects as26 year old Tanatnan Nanchaiwong, 37 year old Kantree Kaeokunnok, and Kanokpol Rakton, aged 19.

Tanatnan made the rifles’ working parts and was the admin of the network’s online platforms. Kantree made gun stocks and Kanokpol packed and mailed the goods.

“They made copies of brands popular in other countries and sold them at 9,500-22,000 baht apiece”

A spokesman for the CSD said the 3 men confessed they’d been operating the illegal business for 2 years. Tanatnan was a vocational student. He originally collected latex at rubber plantations and sold fishing tools, but later learned gunsmithing online and bought the materials in Chiang Rai province, where he lived.

Gun stocks were made in Isaan’s Nakhon Ratchasima province. The gang sold the guns in parts, for customers to assemble. They had customers in 39 provinces and had sold at least 1,000 guns, and made a profit of about 5,000 baht per firearm, according to the CSD.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

Jack Burton

Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

View Comments

  • They seem very enterprising, perhaps all they needed was help getting registered as a company?

  • They are only 22s, not a good war weapon but they could certainly kill.
    A good hunting rifle. Surely there must be someway they can become legal.

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