Fleeing drug trafficker shot dead, 15m speed pills seized

Sacks containing about 15 million speed pills are found stuffed in the back of a pickup truck in Chiang Rai's Wiang Chai district on Thursday night. The driver died exchanging shots with police and soldiers while attempting to flee. (Supplied photo)

CHIANG RAI: A drug trafficker was shot dead in an exchange of gunshots while fleeing arrest and about 15 million methamphetamine pills were found in bags on his vehicle, in Wiang Chai district on Thursday night.

Narcotics suppression police supported by soldiers watching a secondary road from northern border areas in Chiang Saen district to Wiang Chai district ordered a Toyota pickup truck to stop about 11pm. Instead, the driver sped off, firing shots at them as he fled, according to police.

They fired back. The driver of the pickup truck lost control and the vehicle came to a stop on the roadside in tambon Wiang Nuea of Wiang Chai district.

A careful inspection found the driver was dead inside the pick up  He was carrying an ID card with the  name Anat Jirawatpakdee, 30.

A total of 75 fertiliser sacks filled with meth pills were found in the back of the truck. Around 15 million pills in total, police said.

Extra patrols were ordered by Pol Lt Gen Chinnaphat Sarasin, chief of the Narcotics Suppression Bureau (NSB), following information that a large quantity of illicit drugs would be smuggled from a border area in Chiang Saen district to the Central Region via downtown Muang district on Thursday night. They learned the smugglers would be using a secondary road to avoid security checkpoints. 

A video clip shows senior police officers examining the seized drugs in Chiang Rai on Friday morning. (Video by PR.Chiangrai Facebook page)

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