The arrest of the couple was announced at a press conference held at Phuket City Police Station yesterday (Dec 9).
Kamala Police Chief Pol Col ML Pattanajak Jakkapan and Phuket City Police Deputy Superintendent Pol Col Pinit Sirisak held the press conference to announce the arrest of Janjam Kosai, 36, and Ms Uraiwan Siriwong, 28, who had 142.6 kilos of kratom leaves stashed at their rented room in Kamala.
Col ML Pattanajak explained that the two were arrested during an anti-drug and -crime campaign held between December 4-10.
Police received a tip-off from locals that the couple were working as local market vendors, but were known to smuggle kratom onto the island in their Toyota pick-up truck.
They rented a room in Baan Hao Kwan in Kamala and used it to store the kratom before dividing it into small bundle to sell to locals.
“We appointed undercover officers to monitor the couple. They followed them to their rented room and told Janjam they wanted to search his truck. In doing so they found a bundle of kratom hidden behind the driver seat,” Col ML Pattanajak said.
“When the officers opened the door to the rented room they discovered 740 bundles of kratom on the floor. Uraiwan was in the room at the time,” he added.
Col ML Pattanajak also said that Janjam and Uraiwan confessed to buying the kratom from a man known as Bao.
“Bao dropped the kratom off at Heroines Monument at 1am on Dec 8. We placed the kratom in four sacks and transported them to our room,” Janjam told police.
Col ML Pattanajak added, “Janjam said he paid B850 per kilo and sold the leaves to teenagers and migrants workers for B1,200 per kilo. They would sell out in ten days.
“They admitted that they did not make any money as market vendors because business not good so they turned to kratom dealing instead.”
Janjam and Uraiwan were charged with possession of a Category 5 drug with intent to sell.