Provincial Police Region 8 Deputy Commissioner Pol Maj Gen Thaworn Saengrit announced the arrests and mass motorbike seizures yesterday (Nov 22) at a press conference held at Region 8 Police headquarters, located at the northern end of the island.
Maj Gen Thavorn said that a crackdown on motorbike street races and other offenses was held on Nov 11-20, following the widespread news in the Thai media on Nov 6-7 of a group of hundreds of “racing motorcycles” persuading each other on social media to go on a merit-making tour to Phu Thap Boek, in Phetchabun Province, under the name "Trip No Bathing".
The group caused trouble for the public, and the Prime Minister had given importance to solving the problem of wayward youths, he added.
“And there is a policy to act on repair shops that are involved with racing and shops or factories that smuggle exhaust pipes into the country that do not meet industry standards. We are to strictly enforce the law against the perpetrators involved,” Maj Gen Thavorn said.
Searches of 830 shops had resulted in 10 prosecutions, with 210 non-standard exhaust pipes seized, he said.
In total 165 motorcycles were seized, along with 168 people charged for operating an illegally modified vehicle, 547 people were processed for driving without a license and 292 were found to be used “with incomplete accessories”.
Eighty-five people were charged for risky behavior by racing on the road, Maj Gen Thavorn said.
Other arrests carried out by Region 8 Police from Nov 10-20 included 267 arrests for gambling offenses, 784 arrests for drug offenses, 89 arrests for offenses under the Immigration Act, 184 for firearms offenses and 223 people arrested on outstanding warrants.
Regarding crimes of technology crimes, Region 8 Police arrested 21 people for operating online scams, 57 people for selling illegal merchandise online, 12 people for spreading fake news and other crimes under the Computer Crimes Act, 214 people for online gambling (transnational or otherwise) and one person for “child sexual abuse or women on the Internet and human trafficking”. No further details were provided on this last case.
In an attempt to improve road safety, Region 8 Police during the period charged 309 people for “ghost driving” (driving against the direction of traffic), 151 people for violating traffic signals, and 23 people for driving on a sidewalk “without reasonable cause”.
Eight people were charged with reckless driving which may cause harm to persons or property, Maj Gen Thavorn said.
Of note, Region 8 Police are responsible for overseeing Provincial Police operations in the seven Upper Southern Thailand provinces of Phuket, Phang Nga, Krabi, Ranong, Chumphon, Surat Thani and Nakhon Sri Thammarat.
Maj Gen Thavorn yesterday did not specify how many of the arrests announced were conducted in Phuket.