The network was a family affair; homes and land seized.
When: November 30th, 2020
Perpetrators: 842 people involved in drug trade
Victims: A ton of addicts and yaba heads
What: The past week saw a massive operation in Northern Thailand to take down the drug network and syndicates that smuggle and distribute in the region. More than 200 officers – military and police – were involved in the operation.
A summary of the seized assets is as follows:
- 737,000 yaba tabs
- 82.5 kilos of meth
- 1.4 kilos of cannabis
- 85 cannabis plants
- .7 kilos of heroin
- 14 guns
- 8 cars, 5 motorcycles
- 37 land plots
The investigation started after busting one Mr. Wiwatchai at an army checkpoint in Lampang province. Law enforcement then arrested Mr. Sungnoen with 2.8 million yaba tabs before expanding their search warrants to family and associates of Mr. Wiwatchai. His mother was even involved.
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My take: Small busts often lead to massive cases. The drug networks are entrenched in some parts of the country. Oftentimes, it’s a family business. The seizure of land, homes, vehicles, and other assets shows how serious the authorities in Thailand are to eradicating the networks. The problem is, the game is so profitable that when one syndicate is taken down, another takes its place.
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