Court upholds life sentence for Lao drug trafficker Xaysana

Court upholds life sentence for Lao drug trafficker Xaysana

Convicted Lao drug trafficker Xaysana Keopimpha, centre left, arrives at the Criminal Court on Dec 19, 2019 to hear the Appeal Court's ruling in another drug case. (Bangkok Post file photo)
Convicted Lao drug trafficker Xaysana Keopimpha, centre left, arrives at the Criminal Court on Dec 19, 2019 to hear the Appeal Court's ruling in another drug case. (Bangkok Post file photo)

The Appeal Court has upheld the lower court’s sentence of life imprisonment for Lao drug kingpin Xaysana Keopimpha for colluding to possess large quantities of methamphetamine pills in 2015 and 2016

The ruling was read out at the Criminal Court on Thursday.

Xaysana and two accomplices, Chumphon Phanompai and Ratchapon Ratsaponpakorn, were arrested and charged with collusion in the possession of methamphetamine with intent to sell.

The court was told that Xaysana, the first defendant, and Chumphon, the second defendant, had colluded with several others in arranging for 2,381,400 meth pills to be smuggled from Laos and for a vehicle to take the drugs to clients in the South and in Malaysia between July 24 and Sept 14, 2015.

Between Aug 17 and Aug 22, 2016, the three defendants had colluded in smuggling another one million meth pills into the country and delivering the drugs to a network in the South through a contact in Malaysia, Sainudeng Ma.

Ratchapon, the third defendant, had allegedly received money transfers from Sainudeng Ma on several occasions,  amounting to 144 million baht. The money had then been transferred to Xaysana's friend in Laos. 

The three defendants were arrested in possessionof drugs and material evidence used for drug smuggling.

On Sept 26, 2018, the Criminal Court sentenced Xaisana and Chumphon to death. The sentences were reduced to life in prison after the court found their testimony useful. The court acquitted Ratchapon.

Xaysana and Chumphon appealed the lower court’s ruling. They were taken from he Central Correctional Institution for Drug Addicts to the court on Thursday to hear the ruling. 

On Dec 19,  2019, the Appeal Court upheld a separate sentence of life imprisonment for the Lao drug kingpin for smuggling 1.2 million speed pills in to the country in 2016.



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