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Bangkok at the centre of Thailand's drug problem, seminar told

Mar 30. 2012
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By The Nation

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Bangkok hosts 20 per cent of the drug abuse in the country, as the capital is a delivery, storage and pickup point for narcotic rackets, according to a seminar hosted yesterday by the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration.

“Ice” flakes, or methamphetamine, have become increasingly popular among young people in Bangkok, especially students aged 1519, said the speakers, who represented antinarcotics units from various agencies, including the BMA’s own centre.

Rich methamphetamine, with 95percent purity, is widely available and most popular with young users. The number of those seeking treatment and rehabilitation is high at 70 per cent, ??of what?? however, with The youngest person seeking treatment and rehabilitation was reported to be 12, the seminar was told.

Arrests and seizures of drugs are mostly conducted in northern districts of Bangkok, which are links to delivery routes connecting the Central region to the Northeast, where the drugs are made or smuggled through.

Deputy Bangkok Governor Dr Malinee Sukkhavejvorakij said the BMA would intensify its antinarcotics operations at the community level, relying on cooperation and participation by residents motivated by care and family love as key factors in reforming young drug users.

Meanwhile in Chiang Mai, police yesterday raided a warehouse and seized more than 6,000 bottles of pseudoephedrinebased cold syrup while the owners produced proof that the medicine was awaiting pickup by a producer after it had been banned for sale.

The warehouse belongs to Om Muang Pharmacy in Muang district, and owners Mathee Pholarj and wife Janthira showed police documents stating that the bottles had been recalled and stored at the warehouse pending delivery to two companies, Thai Nakorn Patana Co and BM Pharmacy Co.

Mae Ping police confiscated the bottles for further verification of the documents provided by the couple, who have not been charged with any offence.

In Si Sa Ket, it has been discovered that 250,000 pseudoephedrine tablets, in addition to the many million earlier discovered or reported during an ongoing crackdown, have gone missing from Phoo Sing Hospital. Police and Department of Special Investigation agents said the hospital staff were cooperating and an initial finding over this case would be completed by next week.

In a separate probe at Kamalasai Hospital in Kalasin, civilian antinarcotics agents said that missing pseudoephedrine tablets, totalling 350,000 so far from this hospital, had been handed over to Thai makers in many districts in border provinces in the North and the Northeast.

“There are links between the case at Kamalasai Hospital and Udon Thani General Hospital, where staff found involved will be facing seizures of their assets,” said Songkhram Khamtonwong, a senior Office of Narcotics Control Board official in charge of the probe of this case.



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