BANGKOK: The 21 Malaysian suspected “drug mules” detained here in March in connection with the seizure of a large haul of drugs may face the harsh reality of spending life in prison upon conviction.
According to information obtained by Bernama from the Ratchada Criminal Court here recently, the Malaysians have been charged under Thailand’s Narcotics Act for possession and sale of Category 1 Substances.
These substances include heroin, amphetamine, methamphetamine, MDMA (Ecstasy) and LSD.
The charge against the Malaysians involves the possession of 14 heroin bars weighing 6.958kg and 226 packages of methamphetamine weighing 224.592kg.
According to information from the court, the prosecutor submitted the case against the men on June 17 after investigations, before the 21 made their first court appearance on Aug 29 for evidence examination.
Their next appearance at the Ratchada Criminal Court has been slated for Dec 19 for evidence inspection and examination.
According to the court’s information, the 21 Malaysians are Muhammad Aisamuddin Abd Razak, Maznezam A Manap, Nabil Syafiq Kamal, Idris Syarif Syaifuddin, Kamaludin Sarju, Ngor Kien Yew, Kenny Lim Wei Liang, Seah Chin Wee, Liew Pow Swee and Yap Chun Man.
The other Malaysians are Tan Chat Phem, Woon Ming Sheng, Wong Kah Seng, Loo Chee Aik, Lim Chee Wei, Choong Weng Wah, Teo Wei Lun, Leong Wai Hong, Ho Wai Hai, Heiw Chen Khuin and Chan Mun Kin.
The Malaysians were arrested on March 23 and 24, in two groups of 15 and six men by Thai Railway police at four different train stations and in a passenger van.
The train they were travelling in was enroute to Butterworth from Hualamphong, Bangkok.
Thai police described the drug haul as one of the largest in recent times, with investigators claiming the drugs were destined for the European market.
According to a Thai police investigator involved in the case, the Malaysian suspects could face life imprisonment if found guilty by the court, despite the Act providing for the death penalty to those found guilty. However, Thailand did not apply the death penalty, said the Thai police investigator, who declined to be identified.