A MONTH of huge drug hauls worth more than Bt4.5 billion in total has triggered alarm at the extent of narcotics-trafficking in Thailand and brought renewed efforts by authorities to curb the problem.
In November, authorities arrested 12,118 drug suspects.
“Confiscated from them were more than 29 million methamphetamine tablets, 132 kilos of crystal methamphetamine, 274 kilos of heroin, and more than 10,000 kilos of marijuana and opium,” Defence Ministry spokesman Lt-General Kongcheep Tantravanich said yesterday.
Upon receiving the November report on anti-narcotics operations, Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister General Prawit Wongsuwon instructed security agencies to place stronger emphasis on intelligence with the goal of eradicating the trafficking rings.
He said military units must implement stringent measures to stem the flow of illicit drugs through jungles and roads along the borders.
He also advised police and administrative officials to crack down on transit points for drugs in their areas.
“Local administrative bodies should also work closely with the Public Health Ministry in rehabilitating drug abusers,” Prawit said.
In a related development, authorities in Phang Nga province announced they had crippled the operations of a drug-trafficking gang.
Police told media on Tuesday evening that at least three members of the gang had been nabbed.
Phang Nga Police Station’s superintendent Pol Colonel Pratuang Srilamontri said the first member of the gang detained was Kitti Puenrak, 28.
He was nabbed with 60,000 methamphetamine tablets and one kilo of crystal methamphetamine in his possession.
“After his arrest, we were able to trace two more drug suspects,” he said.
These two were Apichart Kodsap, 35, and Manit Promjun, 34. Police say Apichart had hidden 38,000 methamphetamine tablets and two kilos of crystal methamphetamine in the forest behind his home, while a search of Manit’s home had revealed 44,000 methamphetamine tablets concealed inside cabinets.