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Thailand News Today, March 4, 2020

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Thailand News Today, March 4, 2020 | The Thaiger

Man arrested with 44 kilograms of marijuana in Phuket

A 60 year old man is in custody after he was found collecting 44 kilograms of dried marijuana, valued at about 400,000 baht, from a parcel delivery company in Phuket.

Police told a press conference yesterday that officers were tipped off about a large shipment of marijuana arriving in Phuket via a parcel company at the end of February.

On the Saturday they went to the office of the private delivery company where they spotted one man who was acting suspiciously, and demanded to examine a carton he was carrying. Inside it there were 44 1 kilogram bricks of dried marijuana.

The man has been charged with possession of a Category 5 drug with intent to sell.

Ayuttaya man arrested with pistol, planning to shoot wife and her lover

Police in Ayuttaya, north of Bangkok, yesterday arrested a man carrying an unregistered handgun and ammunition, who told them he was on his way to shoot his wife and her lover.

The 45 year old was pulled over on his motorbike for a search near Naresuan bridge yesterday morning. He was on his way to the local mall. Police say he was in possession of an unregistered gun loaded with a single bullet. Seven more bullets were found under the motorcycle’s seat.

Saudi man flees Pattaya hospital after alleged attackers show evidence of his debt

A Saudi Arabian man, who was beaten by assailants in Pattaya claiming to be police, has now fled the hospital where he was being treated for his injuries. (

(Reuben VO)

2 speedboats destroyed by fire in Phuket

There’s been another speed boat incident in Phuket, south Thailand. This time 2 speed boats have been badly damaged after one of them caught fire while tied up at a pier in Thalang yesterday afternoon. The fire spread to a second boat tied up next to it. No injuries were reported.

Phuket’s marine police reported that the Lee Loo 2 caught fire about 4.30pm at the Yamu boat pier in Pak Khlok.

The owner of Lee Loo 2 told marine police that he moored his boat at the pier after to allow tourists to alight after a day trip. He says that the fire started while the speed boat was being refuelled.

The damage to the two uninsured fibreglass boats has been estimated at 1 million baht.

Pattaya City officials confirm rumours of Covid-19 in Soi 6 bar staff were fake news

Staff at a bar in Pattaya have confirmed that they just had a normal seasonal flu and not coronavirus (Covid-19) as had been reported in numerous rumours on social media over the past few days.

Hospital results indicated that a staff member from the Pattaya Soi 6 bar did not have the Covid-19 coronavirus. They have now recovered their bout of the flu. Chulalongkorn Hospital officials confirmed the person was negative for the novel Coronavirus.

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Thailand

Cannabis could generate 8 billion baht for Thai pharmaceutical industry by 2025, expert says

Caitlin Ashworth

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Cannabis could generate 8 billion baht for Thai pharmaceutical industry by 2025, expert says | The Thaiger

Cannabis could become a major cash crop in Thailand. An expert says the cannabis-based medicinal products could generate up to 8 billion baht for the Thai pharmaceutical industry by 2025. Medical cannabis has been legal in Thailand for the past couple years, but recently the government agreed to allow parts of the plant with very, low traces of the “high-inducing” component tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, to be in medicinal products and food.

Cannabis-based medicines have been used as palliative treatment for some cancer patients in Thailand. Last year, nearly 1 million patients used cannabis-based medicines, according to an economist at Kasetsart University’s Agricultural and Resource Economics Department, Ravissa Suchato.

Around 1.2 billion baht worth of medical cannabis was consumed last year, according to Ravissa, who led a recent study on the economic impact of commercial cannabis cultivation in Thailand. If the average consumption rises as expected, medical cannabis could generate 8 billion baht within the next 5 years.

“We believe marijuana has great potential as a cash crop because more patients will start using marijuana-based drugs soon.”

In the past, Thai officials have discussed the opportunity to tap into the global cannabis market by exporting medical cannabis, but Ravissa says Thailand still has a way to go.

“Globally, the recreational use of marijuana has risen a lot faster than pharmaceutical use, so the prospect of exporting marijuana-based medicines from Thailand is still a long way off.”

Parts of the cannabis plant that are rich in THC, like the buds, are still illegal and classified as a Category 5 narcotic. Trafficking the plant is still heavily criminalised. Just over the past few days, border patrol police in the Northeastern province Nakhon Pathom seized hundreds of kilograms of dried, compressed cannabis believed to have been trafficked across the Mekong River from Laos and destined for the South, possibly to Malaysia.

SOURCE: Thai PBS

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Crime

Another drug bust near the Mekong River, 500 kilograms of cannabis seized

Caitlin Ashworth

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Another drug bust near the Mekong River, 500 kilograms of cannabis seized | The Thaiger
PHOTO: MGR Online

In another drug bust in Northeastern province Nakhon Phanom, police arrested a man and seized 500 kilograms of compressed cannabis. Just yesterday, border patrol police in the province seized 920 kilograms of compressed cannabis from a boat on the Mekong River. In both cases, police suspect the cannabis came from Laos, just across the river.

Police say they searched a black Nissan Navara pickup around 1am in the province’s Na Kae district. Police opened the truck’s bed cover and found 12 sacks with 500 packages of dried, compacted cannabis. Each package of cannabis weighed 1 kilogram, similar to the previous bust on the river.

28 year old Saravut Butngam was arrested. Saravut previously worked in construction, but has recently been unemployed. He allegedly told police that a man called him with an opportunity to make 50,000 baht. He was told to drive the pickup truck from a petrol station in the Na Kae district to a specified location in the neighbouring province Sakon Nakhon, police say. From there, another driver would take over.

Border police commander Sippanan Sornkhunkaew says he suspects the cannabis seized in the province was trafficked from Laos across the Mekong River. He says he believes the cannabis was planned to be trafficked to Southern Thailand and then smuggled across the border, possibly to Malaysia.

On Sunday morning, police confiscated 920 kilograms of cannabis from a boat on the Mekong River. When police approached the boat, men jumped off onto a smaller boat and fled the scene. The dried, compacted cannabis was wrapped in 1 kilogram packages.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Drugs

Police seize 920 kilograms of cannabis smuggled across the Mekong River

Caitlin Ashworth

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Police seize 920 kilograms of cannabis smuggled across the Mekong River | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Thairath

In a major bust on the Mekong River, notorious for drug smuggling, border patrol police seized 920 kilograms of dried, compacted cannabis from a boat along the Nakhon Pathom riverbank, bordering Laos.

Police were tipped off about a large shipment of drugs being trafficked across the Thai-Laos border. Police spotted a boat around 4am yesterday. When police moved in, men onboard the boat jumped onto a smaller boat and sped off. Police found 23 sacks filled with 1-kilogram packages of compressed cannabis.

Police seize 920 kilograms of cannabis smuggled across the Mekong River | News by The Thaiger

PHOTO: MGR Online

In the recent months, police have seized more than 5 tonnes of cannabis. While the Thai government has been loosening measures on cannabis, allowing parts of the plant with low traces of the psychoactive component tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, to be used in food and medicinal products, trafficking cannabis is still illegal. Cannabis with high amounts of THC is still classified as a Category 5 narcotic.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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