The success of crackdowns on criminal gangs operating on the resort island of Koh Samui last week has encouraged police to expand their list of targets to include more tourist destinations nationwide. Acting chief of the Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) Thitirat Nonghanpitak led about 300 police together with military forces in a dawn operation on the resort island on Friday. A combined team of 756 police and military raided 26 spots believed to be the hideouts of powerful people or criminals. They arrested five suspects and confiscated 20 guns and 835 rounds of ammunition as well as three kilogrammes of kratom, a narcotic plant. The decision to look into criminal cases on the island came after local businessman Panas Kao-uthai, 49, was gunned down in a restaurant early this month, apparently as a result of business conflicts among so-called influential figures on the island. His death frightened villagers and caused panic on the island, which is Thailand’s top tourist destination. There was a concern that the high level of crime on the island was tarnishing its reputation as a safe tourist destination. Authorities were urged to speed up their probe into the murder. During the operation, there was a search […]
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