A Lao man was arrested in Nakhon Phanom early on Thursday for allegedly attempting to smuggle 840 kilograms of marijuana across the Mekong River.
The Navy’s Mekong Patrol Operation Command announced the arrest at an 8am press conference.
Capt Natthakiart Monkhunthod, in charge of patrols between Bueng Kan and Mukdahan, said officers on one of the Navy’s vessels spotted two boats crossing from the Lao side to Tambon Chaiyaburi in Tha Uthane district at 1am.
Natthakiart said one of the boats, which appeared empty of cargo, sped back to Laos after the skipper saw the Navy patrol.
The second, heavily laden, was chased down. Its skipper, identified as Thaotone Aksornwonge, was arrested after a search uncovered 840 blocks of marijuana onboard, each weighing a kilogram.
The Lao said he’d been paid Bt50,000 to deliver the cannabis to a Thai waiting across the river.