A drug courier was arrested and 390 kilogrammes of crystal methamphetamine seized from his pickup truck in Chana district of this southern border province on Friday.
Officers manning Ban Khuan Meed permanent checkpoint on the main Asian Highway in Chana district searched the suspected pickup truck and found 10 sacks of crystal meth hidden under plastic bags of cucumbers.
The seized drugs, weighing 390kg, had a street value of 78 million baht.
Driver Sompong Arun, 50, of Samut Sakhon province, was arrested, said Songkhla governor Jetsada Jitrat during a media briefing on Friday.
Police later seized another pickup truck involved in the drug smuggling. The vehicle was left abandoned near a petrol station, about 500 metres from the checkpoint. The driver managed to flee.
Mr Sompong told police he had been hired for 30,000 baht to transport crystal meth from Ratchaburi province to Tak Bai district of Narathiwat province and that it was his second time smuggling the drugs.
Police extended the investigation and found there were two more people involved. They were Mr Sompong’s daughter Mata Arun and his son-in-law Jak Thengsiri , 42.
Ms Mata was the owner of a bank account that received money transfers from the drug trade while Mr Jak issued orders regarding the delivery of crystal meth.
The investigators believed the seized drugs were destined for Malaysia and a third country. The drugs could fetch up hundreds of million baht if smuggled out of the country.
Mr Sompong was initially charged with colluding in having illicit drugs in his possession with intent to sell. Police were deployed to hunt down the remaining suspects and would extend the investigation to seize assets of those involved.
credit Bangkok post