Thai police grab guns in firearm raid on politicians

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Uthai Thani: Police yesterday seized 31 firearms and 28 rounds of assorted ammunition in raids on 30 locations targeting people suspected of wielding so-called “dark influence” in this Central province, deputy national police chief Srivara Ransibrahmanakul said.

The operation involved about 400 police from the Crime Suppression Division (CSD) and other police units. It was led by Pol Lt Gen Thitirat Nonghanpithak, commissioner of the Central Investigation Bureau (CIB).

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One target was the house of Paphawich Bussawadee, a local politician in tambon Lum Khao of Nong Khayang district.

Mr Paphawich, a provincial councillor, was not at home when police showed up.

Police also searched a boxing gym he owned, but found nothing illegal, Pol Gen Srivara said.

Another raid targeted Saichon Wisuchart, a kamnan’s assistant in tambon Lan Sak, in Lan Sak district. Police found and seized seven shotguns at his house, police said.

The operation was carried out in response to the National Council for Peace and Order’s directives to suppress illegal activities in the provinces, Pol Gen Srivara said.

Intelligence agencies had warned that Uthai Thani had a number of influential people suspected of accumulating firearms, he added.

Pol Gen Srivara, who is in charge of cracking down on dark influences and hired gunmen, said no arrests were made.

Meanwhile, a raid in Surat Thani netted a rifle, three handguns and 13 firearm permits from the house of Jarong O-thong, a kamnan in tambon Bangchana of Muang district yesterday, 4th Army Region Deputy Commander Pornsak Poonsawat said.

Mr Jarong was not at home at the time of the raid, he added.

The house was one of 10 locations in Muang and Phunphin districts raided yesterday, he said.

In a separate raid in the same district, authorities seized a gun and 500 bullets from Surachai Charoenkij, 38, and Surachet Feuangdej, 37, from a house.

They were charged with possessing a weapon without a permit, he said.

-The Bangkok Post

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