Recently, the Royal Thai Police revealed the success of a major operation aimed at preventing and suppressing crime related to illegal firearms and land traffic offenses. From July 1 to September 30, 2023, authorities have been diligently working to tackle influential offenses and hired gunman-related activities.
Led by Pol. Lt. Gen. Samran Nuanma, Deputy National Police Commissioner, the operation involved cooperation among various agencies, including the Metropolitan Police Headquarters, Provincial Police Regions 1-9, the Central Investigation Bureau, Narcotics Suppression Bureau, Tourist Police Bureau, Immigration Office, Technology Crime Investigation Bureau, and Border Patrol Police Headquarters. The focus was on gathering information on individuals involved in the illegal firearms trade, resulting in a series of targeted searches at 1,658 points across the country on July 21, 2023.
As a result, a total of 966 suspects were arrested, and a significant number of illegal firearms were seized. The confiscated items included 811 firearms without registration numbers, 99 firearms with registration numbers belonging to others (wrong hands), 44,540 ammunition, 2 explosives, and 6,239 methamphetamine tablets.
During the operation, an important suspect, Mr. Anuchai or Boom Sanguan, was located at a house in Na Khao Subdistrict, Khao Phanom District, Krabi Province. He was accused of drug-related offenses and attempted murder of a police officer, with three arrest warrants against him. As the police closed in on him, he attempted to escape and opened fire on the officers. In response, the police returned fire, and the suspect was fatally shot. A 9mm Mauser handgun, one M-67 grenade launcher, and two smoke grenades were found in his possession.
Another significant arrest was made in Udon Thani Province, where Mr. Somyot or M, a 42-year-old suspect, was apprehended at a villa in Huai Keng Subdistrict, Kumphawapi District. He faced charges related to assembling, repairing, changing characteristics, importing, owning, or distributing firearms and ammunition without permission, as well as illegal possession and use of category I narcotics (Yaba). The police seized 8 modified automatic firearms and revolvers, along with various ammunition, drugs, and equipment used to manufacture or modify firearms.
Pol. Gen. Torsak Sukwimol, Deputy Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Thai Police, commended the joint efforts of the various units involved in the operation, and he expressed gratitude to the government and the public for providing valuable information on illegal firearms-related activities. The nationwide crackdown on firearms offenders is expected to significantly reduce crime and ensure greater safety and security for the public.
Pol. Gen. Torsak urged the public to continue cooperating with the police by reporting any suspicious behavior or criminal activities through the hotline numbers 191 and 1599, available 24 hours a day. The authorities are committed to investigating all arrests and extending the results to those involved in the illegal firearms trade, from manufacturers to sellers and buyers.