Six drug smugglers shot dead by Chiang Rai task force
Officials of Chiang Rai’s Pha Muang task force on Tuesday engaged in a gunfight with a group of drug smugglers while patrolling Thai-Myanmar border in Mae Fah Luang district in Chiang Rai province. After the shootout six of the gang members have been shot dead while nine backpacks containing over 1.8 million amphetamine tablets were found at the scene.
“The shootout took place at around 4am of Tuesday when the soldiers were patrolling Ban Li Se village in Mae Fah Luang district,” said Col. Chatree Sa-Nguantham, deputy commander of the task force. “They found a group of suspects of about 10-15 men trying to enter Thailand via a natural channel while wearing backpacks. They were also fully armed.”
Chatree added that as officials were signaling them to stop, the group opened fired at officials which prompted them to fire back. The gunfight lasted about 15 minutes before the group retreated back into Myanmar territory.
According to Chatree, the backpacks made from fertilizer sacs that the group left behind each contains about 200,000 tablets of amphetamine, which is type I narcotics under Thai law.
Gen. Narit Thawornwong, commander of Pha Muang task force has ordered the deployment of additional soldiers along the Thai-Myanmar border in Chiang Rai to stop drug smuggling gangs from entering the country.