Remote chopper used to smuggle drugs

February 10, 2014
By

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A remote-controlled helicopter was used to smuggle drugs and mobile phones into Khon Kaen Central Prison on Sunday. The aircraft flew over the walls of the jail and headed to Zone 2 in the early morning hours and dropped a box wrapped in grey duct tape near the bathroom area, Khon Kaen governor Somsak Suwannajarit told a news conference.

It was picked up by a radio frequency sensor system installed around the prison. Authorities collected the box and found 4kg of crystal methamphetamine, or ya ice, three mobile phones with SIM cards and battery chargers and sharp metal objects.

Officials conducted a search in a one-kilometre radius around the prison to track down the person who controlled the helicopter but failed to find the suspect. They found the aircraft left with the engine still running in a drainage canal about 150 metres from the facility.

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After the incident, authorities searched the prison and confiscated numerous prohibited items, mostly sharp objects. No illicit drugs were detected, Mr Somsak said. Wuthichai Jenwiriyakul, the prison’s commander, believed the helicopter belonged to a major drug network attempting to deliver drugs into the prison but apparently they dropped the parcel at the wrong spot.

The seized aircraft had a camera installed at the front and was estimated to cost between 700,000 and one million baht. It was believed to be the same remote control aircraft used to drop a box containing three mobile phones into the prison last month.

Mr Wuthichai said a mobile phone could fetch 100,000 baht once it is smuggled into the prison and sold, according to inmates. Investigations are underway to find the suspects behind the drug smuggling by the costly remote control helicopter.

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