500kg ganja seized in Nakhon Phanom

500kg ganja seized in Nakhon Phanom

Police show the 500 kilogrammes of compressed marijuana seized in Na Kae district of Nakhon Phanom on Monday morning. (Photo: Pattanapong Sripiachai)
Police show the 500 kilogrammes of compressed marijuana seized in Na Kae district of Nakhon Phanom on Monday morning. (Photo: Pattanapong Sripiachai)

NAKHON PHANOM: A man was arrested with 500 kilogrammes of dried marijuana in packages in the back of his pickup in Na Kae district early on Monday.

Pol Col Sippanan Sornkhunkaew, commander of 23rd Border Patrol Police Unit, said the action was a joint operation by local government agencies in the province.

The pickup, a black Nissan Navara with roofed-over rear section, was intercepted shortly after it left a petrol station in the munipal area of Na Kae district about 1am.

A search found 12 sacks in the back holding 500 slabs of compressed marijuana, each  weighing 1kg.

The driver, Saravut Butngam, 28, of Surin's Chom Phra district, was arrested.

Mr Saravut, an unemployed construction worker, said he received a telephone call from a man who promised to pay him 50,000 baht to drive the pickup from a petrol station in Nakhon Phanom's Na Kae district to a spot in Sakon Nakhon.

At Sakon Nakhon, another driver would take over. 

Pol Col Sippanan said the marijuana was probably smuggled across the Mekong river from Laos and was destined for the South, from where it would be smuggled to a third country.

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