Thai paramilitary rangers shot dead six drug traffickers smuggling 300 kilograms of ketamine into Thailand in the forests of Chiang Mai province near the border of Myanmar at 3am today.
In the dead of night in the dense jungle, Thai paramilitary rangers crossed paths with “foreign drug traffickers” in Mon Pin subdistrict in Chiang Mai’s Fang district.
The rangers reported that upon attempting to stop and search the traffickers, the sound of gunfire erupted, prompting them to shoot back, extrajudicially killing six drug traffickers.
The rangers requested support from the Pha Mueang Force of Army Region 3 who patrolled the area until sunrise.
The army seized 19 backpacks filled with a sizeable 300 kilograms of ketamine with an estimated street value of 57 million baht, according to Commander of the Pha Mueang Force Maj. Gen. Suparuk Sathaphonphol and Chief of Chiang Mai Police Maj. Gen. Thawatchai Pong Wiwatchai, who travelled to inspect the scene.
Ketamine is a synthetic drug classified as a Category II narcotic in Thailand.
Officers from Fang Police Station, doctors from Fang Hospital, and Fang Border Patrol volunteers also joined the operation to offer assistance. It’s not reported whether any soldiers were wounded in the crossfire.
Shortly after the six extrajudicial killings, more gunfire was heard 200-300 metres away, prompting another shootout of which the implications of which have not yet been reported.
Maj. Gen. Suparuk and Maj. Gen. Tawatchai said their work is not yet done in the area.
Suparak and Tawatchai will continue to deploy forces to hunt down drug traffickers to arrest and prosecute them all until the entire drug trafficking operation is over.
The officers said they have ordered more drones to assist them in their fight against international drug smuggling.
In March, 25 kilogrammes of ketamine wrapped in 25 Chinese tea bags washed up on a beach in Trat province in eastern Thailand.
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