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Arrested with haul of cigarettes, liquor

A man was arrested with a large quantity of foreign cigarettes, whisky and wine after a pick-up he was driving overturned in Muang district of this western province in the small hours on Sunday.

The arrest of Atthapol Pacharat, 24, from Phuket’s Thalang district, was made at about 2.45am by a border security patrol from a checkpoint at Ban Khao Nip in tambon Ban Kao which rushed to nearby Takhian Ngam village on being alerted to the accident.

On arriving at the scene, patrol members found many cases had been thrown out of the pick-up, which had overturned. The cases were found to contain altogether 27,500 packages of a brand of foreign cigarettes.

Information from Mr Atthapol led to a search of a rented room at Moo 11 village in tambon Nong Khao in Kanchanaburi’s Tha Muang district.

In the room, the authorities found another 3,620 packages of foreign cigarettes, 45 bottles of Red Label whisky and 131 bottles of foreign wine.

Mr Atthapol said he was hired for 5,000 baht by a man called “O” to deliver the contraband in a pick-up from Phu Nam Ron village in tambon Ban Kao in Muang district to be stored in the rented room in Tha Muang district before further distribution.

The contraband was uncovered when the pick-up overturned.

An investigation was underway into the smuggling of the contraband.

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