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Police crackdown on major drug syndicate, make 3 more arrests

Caitlin Ashworth

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PHOTO: Thairath

“A warrant was issued for his arrest in 2018, but he wasn’t arrested until June of this year.”

Police made 3 arrests in an effort to take down a major drug syndicate, totalling up to 16 arrests related to the gang. The 3 arrests, which included a man in monkhood, are all connected to a major drug dealer named Jittaphan Meemuang, also known as the alias Jun Bordin.

Jitaphan’s network allegedly smuggles illicit drugs from northern border provinces and keeps them at a Sing Buri warehouse. The drug network operates in the Central Plains region and has about 1 billion baht in circulation. Jitaphan has allegedly been in the drug trade for the past 10 years. A warrant was issued for his arrest in 2018, but he wasn’t arrested until June of this year.

Police say his “right hand man” is 21 year old Arnon Kiram. Police recently arrested Arnon in a field about a kilometre away from his home in Lop Buri on a warrant for colluding in illicit drug trade. Police say Arnon runs a soil excavation business and a restaurant as a cover up, possibly to launder money.

Arnon told police he had heard of Jittaphan’s drug, but he’s not involved. He says a member told him to transfer a small amount of money at an ATM, but that’s all.

Commissioner of the Narcotics Suppression Bureau Chinnapat Sarasin says officers first went to Arnon’s house. The fan was still turned on, but Arnon wasn’t inside. Officers then flew a camera drone and saw the man running off into a corn field. Arnon says an employee called and told him the police were looking for him. He ran because he was scared, he says.

Another arrest was made while the suspect was in monkhood in Sing Buri. 30 year old Pornthep Phucharoenwanit was arrested while he was collecting alms. Not only was he charged with colluding in the drug trade, but he was expelled from the temple.

The third arrest was 30 year old Atchariya Chuenchom in Sing Buri. Police say both Pornthep and Atchariya work for the drug network by finding new customers and collecting money.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

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