Teen gang “robbed to buy drugs and toys’
PHUKET TOWN: Police believe they have brought a series of snatch-and-ride crimes to an end with the arrest at the weekend of four young suspects who, officers say, used their ill-gotten gains to buy toys and drugs. Women riding motorbikes alone after dark were the gang’s usual targets. Police allege that the three boys and a girl would grab handbags, purses, money and mobile telephones from baskets before speeding off. At least 21 robberies are believed to be involved, dating back to October. The gang were nabbed when Phuket Town Police raided a dwelling in Chao Fa Nok Rd about 5 am on Saturday. Officers carried sketches of the suspects, which they used to help with identification. Two of the arrested teenagers were still students. Police said all four were from poor families, and that they sold the stolen goods to buy toys and ya bah (methamphetamine). Two of the boys, aged 16 and 17, and the girl, 17, were remanded to the Juvenile Observation and Protection Center, while the other boy, 18, was being held at Phuket Town Police Station, pending their appearance in Phuket Provincial Court.
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