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Mystery mini-sub found on Koh Sirae

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Mystery mini-sub found on Koh Sirae | The Thaiger

KOH SIRAE, PHUKET: Gazette staff today located and photographed the mini-submarine that has been at the center of a controversy over the presence of Tamil rebel operations in Phuket. But so far, the discovery of the mini-sub raises more questions than it answers. The part-finished sub is about five meters long and is large enough to hold two, perhaps three people. According to a Thai co-owner of the shipyard, the sub was delivered from Bangkok about five years ago. No work has been done on it since then. “The sub is still in the same condition as when it came down from Bangkok. I’ve never seen anyone touching it,” he told Gazette reporters. He said that the vessel was consigned to Christy Reginald Lawrence, also a co-owner of the yard. There are a number of shareholders in the shipyard, but of these only three are active in the running of the yard, the co-owner said. One is himself. Another is Mr Lawrence, a Tamil who holds a Norwegian passport. “The third is an American man whom I’ve never seen. I don’t even know his name. Actually, the whole yard was run and pretty much owned by Christy. I know only a little about the company,” said the co-owner. He added that Mr Lawrence, who has been alleged to be a member of the Sri Lankan rebel group, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), has been in Phuket for the entire six-year history of the yard. He also said that he has never seen Mr Lawrence handling any firearms. However, he added, “There are some other things that might support claims [that Mr Lawrence is a member of the LTTE]. There are some things I saw that were a bit strange, like some documents that were seized, but I did not ask him about them.” Asked why he knew so little, the co-owner said, “On paper, I have a big share. But in reality I have only a small part. So there are some things I would rather not know and better not tell.” In April, Mr Lawrence was arrested by the Marine Police on smuggling charges after they investigated his 17-meter, four-engine speedboat and found 5,000 liters of fuel, military uniforms, propaganda materials for the LTTE, and sonar and communications equipment on board. Mr Lawrence was released on bail and, according to the co-owner, is still living in Phuket with his girlfriend. The shipyard, meanwhile, has been closed until the investigations are complete. Yesterday, when approached by the Gazette, the Superintendent of the Phuket Marine Police denied the existence of the submarine. They have also denied that the LTTE have made Racha Yai Island, 15 km from the southwest coast of Phuket, the new hub of their Southeast Asia gun-running and fund-raising activities. Attempts by the Gazette to contact Mr Lawrence have so far been unsuccessful.

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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Events

The 15th Mai Khao Marine Turtle fun run attracts more than 4,000 runners

The Thaiger

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The 15th Mai Khao Marine Turtle fun run attracts more than 4,000 runners | The Thaiger

4,000 runners from Thailand and overseas took part in the 15th Mai Khao Marine Turtle Fun Run and Half Marathon 2019 yesterday, starting from the Phuket Gateway.

The event is expected to raise 700,000 baht for the charity, now in its 15th year. The money raised goes towards to The Mai Khao Marine Turtle Foundation, which is committed to protecting the marine and coastal environment, and ecosystems, for the wellbeing of sea turtles that nest in the Mai Khao beach and the surrounding areas.

The annual race also provides funds for thePhuket Marine Biological Centre’s Injured Turtle Rehabilitation Program and The Third NavalArea Command’s Turtle Hatchery Program.

The race was in its 15th year and runners of all ages and abilities took part in the race. The morning’s racing was divided into five categories – the 21.1km half marathon, 10.5km mini- marathon, 5km fun run and 3k family run and VIP participants for all the races. The route of 21.1 kilometre race took runners northwest along the Haad Sai Kaew beach towards Thao Thepkasattri bridge, past the rural road No. 3006, run along the road – Pi Lai viewpoint area returned back along the T. Baan Tha Nun to the iconic Sarasin bridge before finished the half marathon in the Phuket Gateway.

For Mini Marathon 10.5 km – Over all category, Mr. Chinnawat Changlek clocked 39 minutes and 40 seconds to clinch victory in the male half marathon, winning prize money and a trophy with the signature of Phuket’s Governor. The winner in the female mini marathon was Surakarn Wanna with a time of 47 minutes and 47 seconds.

Winners also received a prize gift voucher as well as a medal. Congratulations to all participants.

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Events

‘Phang Nga Bay and Beyond’ exhibition by Marilyn Band at Mom Tri’s WOK Gallery Kitchen in November

The Thaiger

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‘Phang Nga Bay and Beyond’ exhibition by Marilyn Band at Mom Tri’s WOK Gallery Kitchen in November | The Thaiger

The Art exhibition “Phang Nga Bay and Beyond” by Marilyn Band is being held at Mom Tri’s WOK Gallery Kitchen, Chalong, Kata Hill, Phuket from November 30, 2019 – January 31, 2020. The opening will take place on Saturday November 30, 2019 at 6.30 pm.

Artist’s Statement

“For the current exhibition, I am presenting recent work, a more abstract expression of Phang Nga Bay’s beauty, which intends to encourage the viewer the opportunity to interpret and appreciate a little bit of paradise. I am quite excited about these more abstract works as it has allowed me to explore the essence of these limestone monuments in the bay.

“I find the natural world a beautiful, magical place. My paintings are inspired by many sea voyages. Though based on reality I try to introduce my own feelings and vision which will delight others.”

Biography

Marilyn Band has been creating art since childhood, influenced by a family who surrounded her with paintings and the creations of several generations of her ancestors who were famous stained glass artists. She went to Florence, Italy for life drawing and then went on to study graphics at High Wycombe Technical College in Buckinghamshire, England and started her career as a graphic designer in a variety of advertising agencies in London.

On Holiday in the Seychelles, she met her future husband, Nick Band, and they have been sailing around the Indian Ocean and SE Asia for more than forty years allowing Marilyn the chance to draw and paint the now disappearing tropical cultures from Zanzibar to Sri Lanka to Phuket, and beyond.

She arrived in Phuket in 1980 and immediately built a studio that has been the center of her art projects. Between sea voyages and other travels, Marilyn has become one of Phuket’s most significant artists with one person exhibitions at Mom Tri’s Boathouse and Villa Royale Galleries.

She has also designed and developed the graphics for the island’s world famous Phuket King’s Cup Regatta media.

She continues to explore new avenues of self- expression in acrylic, oil, watercolour, ink, collage and silkscreen.

'Phang Nga Bay and Beyond' exhibition by Marilyn Band at Mom Tri’s WOK Gallery Kitchen in November | News by The Thaiger

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Crime

Thalang Police arrest local Phuket drug dealer with amphetamine pills

The Thaiger

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Thalang Police arrest local Phuket drug dealer with amphetamine pills | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: เหยี่ยวข่าว ภูเก็ต Newshawk Phuket

Thalang Police have arrested a local drug dealer with more than 192 amphetamine pills. Thalang police in Phuket arrested 29 year old Wimon Songkong from Nakhon Si Thammarat with 192 amphetamine pills that he was carrying when they nabbed him in front of a 7-Eleven store inside a PTT gas station on Thepkasattri Road, in Thalang District.

The amphetamine pills were packed in a black zip-lock plastic bag, which was hidden in his grey shoulder bag. Two of the pills were green and 190 of them were orange, while each pill had the letters ‘wy’ printed on them.

Wimon was charged for possessing and trading illicit drugs and was sent to Thalang police station for further investigation and processing.

STORY: Newshawk Phuket

Thalang Police arrest local Phuket drug dealer with amphetamine pills | News by The Thaiger

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