Three drug traffickers arrested in Ban Pong

A combined force of Narcotics Suppression Bureau (NSB) police, railway police and district officials on Tuesday arrested three drug traffickers and seized 300 kilos of Ice drugs which were destined for Hat Yai in the South.

The three were identified as Visarut Trachai, 23, Poltawat Mala, 20, and Chakrapachara Pumpuang, 27.

Another suspect identified as Suriyon Buntiem, 31, managed to escape after authorities combed their rented room at Ban Pong mansion in Ban Pong district of Ratchaburi early today.

The arrest of the three suspects came after NSB and railway police searched a Bangkok-Sungai Kolok train for drugs while it was on the way from Ban Pong to Hua Hin railway station.

The four suspects jumped off the train while it was at Ban Pong station.

Their escape from the train forced the police to conduct thorough search of the 18 cars of the train when it arrived at Hua Hin.

The search found nine abandoned baggages with 300 kilos of Ice hidden inside.

The drug is worth 900 million baht on street price.

Investigation later found the four suspects went to stay at a rented room in Ban Pong mansion.

Authorities then encircled the area and found three of them, but another narrowly escaped.

The suspects said all the drugs were smuggled across the border by boat to Tha Utane in Nakhon Phanom, and then on bus to Bangkok.

They said from Bangkok, they took a south-bound train at Hua Lampong to Hat Yai where another team would smuggle them out to Malaysia.

“But as everything did not not go smoothly as planned when railway police came to check all baggages of the passengers while the train stopped at Ban Pong station, we decided to leave the train for fear of arrest. We then went for a rented room to hide.” one suspect said.

The suspects said they were hired to smuggle 500 kilos of Ice, splitting to two trips, 250 kilos each.

The first trip early last month was successful, they said, adding that if all drugs were success smuggled out, they would be paid 100,000 baht each.

All suspects were sent to the NSB for further interrogation while the fourth suspect is still being hunted.