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Phuket health chief supports medical cannabis cultivation

Caitlin Ashworth

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Phuket health chief supports medical cannabis cultivation | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Unsplash: Matteo Paganelli
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Phuket’s health chief says he backs the production of medical cannabis and suggests those in the island province should look into growing it for research. The local public health office held a workshop at Phuket’s Rajabhat University discussing cannabis production in Phuket.

Right now only state agencies, private universities or state approved farmers can produce medical cannabis. Phuket’s public health chief Thanit Sermkaew says a permit from the Ministry of Health is needed to legally grow cannabis for medical purposes. Those interested in growing cannabis need to research the best weather conditions for cultivation, how to prepare the soil and how to test for residues in the soil, such as heavy metals or pesticides, he says.

While promoting cannabis research, the health chief reminded those at the workshop that cannabis is still classified as a Category 5 controlled substance under Thailand’s Narcotics Act. Police are still doing major busts at illegal cannabis farms.

A bill to the Act is in the works that would allow cannabis to be grown at home, both for personal use and to sell, but growers would need permission from the Food and Drug Administration.

The government is also drafting up a law that would allow people to grow medical cannabis as an economic crop, meaning it would be allowed to be exported to other countries. State-approved grow facilities can only (legally) grow 4 cannabis cultivars. The government is looking into allowing more strains to keep up with the demanding industry.

Phuket’s health chief says researchers need to study and produce different types of cannabis products.

“We also need to look at dry processing marijuana and producing hemp oil to provide medical and research benefits.”

Phuket Vice Governor Phichet Panaphong supports cannabis research and says many people can benefit from using cannabis.

“Every aspect of growing marijuana can bring us more knowledge, especially in the medical benefits of using treatments made from marijuana. Further study of its uses can help the future treatment of various diseases and medical conditions.”

SOURCE: Phuket News

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Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

Drugs

2 million methamphetamine pills found in parked truck

Caitlin Ashworth

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2 million methamphetamine pills found in parked truck | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Line Today

Police found more than 2 million methamphetamine pills in a truck parked at petrol station at Prachuap Khiri Khan’s Bang Saphan Noy district. Police are still looking for the driver.

The Narcotics Suppression Bureau alerted local police about a truck in the area suspected of trafficking drugs. Police spotted a truck that matched the description and saw it turning in to a petrol station.

Police followed, but by the time they reached the vehicle, it was parked and the driver was no where in sight. Officers suspect the driver fled the scene.

The truck had a number of cardboard boxes containing thousands of methamphetamine pills. Police say all together they seized 2,002,000 pills. They also found a bank deposit passbook, 2 identification cards and other documents. The evidence was passed on to the Narcotics Suppression Bureau who are now working on the case.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Drugs

240 kilograms of marijuana found in truck after police chase, driver still on the run

Caitlin Ashworth

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240 kilograms of marijuana found in truck after police chase, driver still on the run | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Esan Daily Online

Border patrol officers chased a pickup truck and seized 240 kilograms of marijuana they say was smuggled across the Thai-Laos border. In the chase, the driver allegedly drove into oncoming traffic, hitting another car before ditching his vehicle and running off.

Officers say they believe the marijuana was smuggled across the Mekong River from Laos and then it was piled in the truck at the border province Nong Khai. After receiving a tip about a truck smuggling marijuana in the Nong Khai province, officers caught up with the truck in Mukdahan.

When officers followed the bronze Toyota pickup truck, the truck suddenly swerved across the median and drove against the flow of traffic before colliding with an oncoming car. The driver then got out of the truck and ran off. Police say there were no injuries.

Officers searched the truck and found 240 bars of dried marijuana. Each compressed bar weighed 1 kilogram. The truck was also confiscated by the customs office. Police are still investigating. The driver has not been found.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Drugs

Border police find 160 kilograms of marijuana hidden in fertiliser sacks

Caitlin Ashworth

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Border police find 160 kilograms of marijuana hidden in fertiliser sacks | The Thaiger
PHOTO: MGR Online

Border police found 160 kilograms of compressed marijuana near an Isaan roadside. Police say they believe the marijuana was trafficked across the Mekong River. No suspects were found and no arrests were made, at this stage.

Police suspect the marijuana was smuggled in on long tail boats from Laos to the Isaan province of Nakhon Phanom during the tropical storm Noul over the weekend. A Border Patrol Police commander, Apisit Rodnoy, says the marijuana was gradually brought across the Mekong River and onto the riverbank in the border district Tha Uthen.

Police say they found 4 fertiliser sacks near a road. The sacks had 200 packages of marijuana adding up to 160 kilograms. Police say it was ready to be picked up by traffickers.

Over the past month, more than a tonne of marijuana has been seized in the province. Police say the compressed marijuana is sold for 3,000 to 5,000 baht per kilogram along the border, but the cost goes up in inner provinces to around 15,000 to 20,000 baht per kilogram.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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