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Cables worth millions stolen

Cables worth millions stolen

On the Pattaya-Mab Ta Put Rayong section of Highway 7, in the Banglamung district, police detained two men they claim to be members of a criminal organization that stole electrical cables from the highway, causing major damage valued at millions of baht.

The two suspects, Anulak, 35, and Traipob, 31, were taken into custody on September 13 just after midnight. Authorities believe that the two people worked together to commit a slew of crimes against important electrical infrastructure along this stretch of highway, causing significant harm. Charges for “tampering with and using electrical materials for unauthorized purposes during nighttime hours” are now being brought against them.
This incident fits with a larger trend of criminal activity that has been plaguing the area lately. Late in August, a gang of three to four criminals broke electrical cables and highway railings along the same section of Highway 7, notably at kilometer 125 in the Banglamung area.

The thieves went unnoticed until highway patrol police happened to arrive on the location while the crimes were being committed. This resulted in a chase and altercation with the criminals, which led to the capture of one suspect, Butakeo, a 38-year-old Laotian citizen. Unfortunately, the remaining offenders got away. This gang of crooks allegedly inflicted roughly 10 million baht worth of damage.
Butakeo acknowledged his participation in the unlawful activity but asserted that he was merely a low-level accomplice. He claimed that the apparent ringleader, a Thai national, recruited him and others to do these crimes.

They intended to steal the electrical cables, sell the equipment to junkyards, and divide the money made among themselves. The accused individuals admitted to committing such theft and vandalism on highways in the provinces of Chonburi and Rayong on more than 50 occasions, pocketing about 20,000 baht per crime. They earned close to one million baht from these illegal acts in total. The money was mainly used to pay for food, rent, and other necessities, as well as for online gambling and drug-related activities.
Authorities are committed to dismantle the network responsible for the considerable harm done to the crucial infrastructure of the highway and are vigorously seeking the remaining fugitives involved in these illegal actions.


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