BANGKOK: A gang of 21 Malaysians, has been arrested in Thailand while smuggling millions of dollars worth of crystal methamphetamine and heroin by train, according to Bernama.
“They were very calm when the police approached them but gave the excuse of not being able to speak English and declined to answer any of our questions. Nevertheless we have the evidence,” said Pol Lt-Gen Thitiraj Nhongharnpitak, commander of the Central Investigation.
Thai police said on Thursday, as quoted by The Bangkok Post, the drugs seized in the operation were worth around RM34 million (about 300 million baht) in Thailand, but the value would increase about 10-fold when it reached other countries, according to Bangkok Post online.
Investigators said the group was moving drugs from northern Thailand to the Malaysian town of Butterworth.
“This gang chose to transport drugs by train rather than by car because transporting by car is riskier as there are several checkpoints,” he said.
Thai police paraded 15 of them who alledgedly concealed the drugs in instant coffee and biscuit packages at the press conference in the capital city.
Railway police made an initial arrest on Wednesday afternoon following a tip-off, taking in two suspects allegedly in possession of 23 kilogrammes of crystal methamphetamine at Ratchaburi train.
Let-GenThitiraj Nhongharnpitak said, the Malaysians were apprehended at four train stations – Ratchburi, Hua Hin, Pracchukirikin, and Surat Thani.
According to the paper, their detention led to subsequent raids on South-bound express train No.35 travelling from Bangkok to Butterworth, with 12 more suspects arrested and a total of 226kg of methamphetamine and 8kg of heroin.
Three men with 35 kg of ya ice and 1.5kg of heroin were detained at Hua Hin station, and then seven men who carried 74kg of ya ice were escorted off the train at Prachuap Khiri Khan station.
The search continued and another 44kg of crystal meth and three more men were taken from the train at Surat Thani. Police then seized more crystal meth and heroin at Chumphon station. – Sarawakvoice.com