CHANTHABURI: Police at a checkpoint on the Chanthaburi-Sra Kaew Rd stopped the approaching Isuzu pickup because the high-sided truck looked like it was massively overloaded. Checking the back of the pickup, officers confirmed the driver’s disclosed cargo of sweet potatoes under the tarpaulin. And under the sweet potatoes, jammed in shoulder-to-shoulder, they found 35 Cambodians, ranging in age from 14 to 40. Officers went to arrest the driver, only to find that while they were checking the cargo, he’d fled, leaving his Thai passenger, Somkiat Wannak, sitting alone in the cab. Police arrested Somkiat and the Cambodians, who told the officers that they had paid 2,000 baht each to be smuggled into Thailand where they believed they would find work.
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