Korean store busted for dodgy drugs
PHUKET TOWN: A Taiwanese man was arrested this morning for illegally selling traditional Thai and Korean medicines. The arrest came when officers, led by the national Commander of the Tourist Police, Pol Maj Gen Panya Maman, raided a store on the bypass road after complaints from tourists. Gen Panya said that officers moved to raid the store after the South Korean embassy requested that action be taken. “Many complaints about the drugstore were made by South Korean tourists because the medicines failed to remedy the ailments they were claimed to cure. In fact, the medicines had not been approved by the Phuket Provincial Health Office [PPHO],” Gen Panya said. The man arrested, shop manager Mah Chao Yung, 47, told police that the Keum Kang San store was owned by a Korean man named only as “Jimmy” and his partner, a Thai woman, and said that some of the medicines had been imported from North Korea. PPHO pharmacist Somsak Sampanprateep, who joined the raid, said, “We have yet to determine the value of the medicines seized. There were lots of Korean herbs, energy medicines and snakes fermented in whisky. Traditional Thai medicines were on sale, too.” Mr Yung was charged with illegally selling drugs and selling non-registered drugs. Each charge carries a maximum fine of 30,000 baht or five years in jail, or both. Gen Panya said that police are continuing their investigation, and that they believe “Jimmy” is now in Bangkok. The drugstore raid this morning followed a series of raids this week on foreigners working illegally in tailor shops in Patong. Seven Burmese men and one Nepalese man were arrested. Gen Panya told the Gazette that the Patong raids were requested by the Central Investigation Bureau, in Bangkok. “We would like to see that tourists are safe and will not be cheated by anyone so that they will return Thailand in the future,” he said.
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