Six major drug gang members held, 400,000 pills seized

Four alleged members of the 'Man Tuk Med' drug gang are arrested along with two other female suspects with more than 400,000 speed pills seized during a raid on a rented house in Khon Kaen on Thursday. (Photo by Chakrapan Nathanri)

KHON KAEN: Six alleged members of the the “Mun Tuk Med” (every pill is fun) drug gang were arrested and more than 400,0000 speed pills, worth about 40 million baht, seized during a raid on a rented house in Muang district on Thursday.

A team of police, soldiers and local officials raided the house in Ban Wang Tor village of tambon Khor on Thursday, following an investigation it was being used by members of the Mun Tuk Med drug gang to store illicit drugs before they were sold to agenets in the Northeast.

Officers found six people at the house. They were later identified as Suthin Onsri, 25, of Phitsanulok; Somsak Sama-ae, 40, of Bangkok; Thotsaporn Khwanpak, 38, of Ayutthaya; Natthapong Phaenlinfa, 23, of Phitsanulok; a 16-year-old Phitsanulok girl whose name was withheld; and Ms Suchada Yodchan, 19, of Phichit.

A search uncovered 406,000 speed pills in four sacks, one pistol, two rounds of ammunition, five mobile phones, a pickup truck and four motorcycles.

Pol Lt Gen Surachai Khuandechakhup, commissioner of Provincial Police Region 4, said local police had learned the house was rented by non-local people. They then kept a close watch and later found the house was used to keep speed pills for sale to teenagers in Khon Kaen province. Young people were often spotted entering the house around the clock before the raid was launched.

“All suspects gave the same account, saying they are network members of the Mun Tuk Med drug gang. They said the seized drugs belong to Mr Somchok Lamphling, alias Off,  21, of Phitsanulok’s Noen Maprang district. The man, leader of the drug gang, had allegedly ordered members to keep illicit drugs at this house. The suspects would then deliver the drugs to network members in Khon Kaen, Kalasin, Roi Et, Maha Sarakham, Udon Thani and Chaiyaphum provinces for 100 baht a pill. The drugs could fetch up to 40.6 million baht if they were successfully delivered," said the regional police chief.

The suspects had been hired to deliver the drugs, using the bank accounts of the two female suspects to receive money transfers from agents who bought the pills, said Pol Lt Gen Surachai.

All suspects were held in police custody at Velunwan police station in Khon Kaen to face drug charges. 

Authorities would extend the investigation to arrest Mr Somchok and those behind the drug trade.

Members of the arresting team examine sacks and find many packs containing speed pills worth about 40 million baht. (Photo by Chakrapan Nathanri)

Speed pills and other items are seized from the rented house in Khon Kaen. (Photo by Chakrapan Nathanri)

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