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XI No.6 - Sunday September 2 - Saturday September 15, 2012

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HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn celebrates 20th anniversary of Prostheses Foundation

HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn visited the Prostheses Foundation on the occasion of their 20th anniversary in her role as President of the Foundation.

Nopniwat Krailerg

HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn presided over the 20th Anniversary celebrations of the Prostheses Foundation under HRH Srinagarindra Boromarajajonani, the Princess Mother. The ceremony was held at the Prostheses Foundation Don Kaew in Mae Rim District on August 16, 2012.

Chiang Mai Deputy Governor Chuchart Keelapaeng and the Board Secretary with Prostheses Foundation officers were on hand to join the ceremony. Her Royal Highness viewed the prosthetics on display including a demonstration of their construction. She presented a gift to the Board and then joined them in the Board meeting.

The Prostheses Foundation was founded under the patronage of HRH Srinagarindra Boromarajajonani, the Princess Mother, in 1992 when she was informed that Assoc. Prof. Dr. Thedchai Chevaket can produce lightweight prostheses from plastic waste that were cheaper to manufacture than the imported ones. The Foundation provides poor, underprivileged people prosthetic limbs free of charge. The foundation was registered on August 17, 1992 when HRH Srinagarindra Boromarajajonani, Princess Mother of Thailand was made Honorary President and HRH Galyani Vadhana the President.

HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn now holds the position as President of theProstheses Foundation of Thailand when she took over in January 26, 2009.

Formula 1 proposed for Chiang Mai

This picture of Nigel Mansell was taken during practice for the 1990 British Grand Prix. (Copyright Row17 and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.)

Nopniwat Krailerg
Sombat Kuruphan, the Assistant Minister for Tourism and Sports came to Chiang Mai to meet with the Board of the Royal Rajapruek Park to discuss the possibility of bringing Formula 1 racing to Chiang Mai.

In a meeting held on August 21 at the Park, the Assistant Minister and members of the Board and related agencies met to discuss the proposal to build a Formula 1 racetrack by 2014. The total construction area would require 500 rai of land. The Assistant Minister said that while the Royal Park Rajapruek was in a beautiful location and was set up to handle large number of tourists, the meeting was being held to see if there were other, better locations. He mentioned Mae Kuang Udom Tara Dam in Doi Saket, Huay Tung Tao in Mae Rim and the Chom Thong district as well. Proposals would be considered in the next 1-2 months.

Dr. Siriphong Hangsaphuek, the Director of Highland Research and Development said that although the Park has 468 rai of land it was set up for botany, the study of native plants and agriculture, as well as Lanna culture. The government had invested a large amount of money to develop it as an ecofriendly destination with environmentally friendly activities. He added that he felt it was not the appropriate place for a Formula 1 racetrack as it would be incompatible with the objectives of the park.

Sombat Kuruphan, the Assistant Minister for Tourism and Sports is joined by Royal Park Rajapruek officials and others involved in the proposition for a Formula 1 racetrack and stadium. (Photo by Nopniwat Krailerg)

Death Railway train re-discovered

The old Japanese Kawasaki steam train sits undercover on private property some 35km from Chiang Mai city. (Photos courtesy of Phil Gibbins)

Shana Kongmun
An antique Japanese train that was used on the infamous Death Railway in Kanchanaburi and made its way to Chiang Mai only to disappear from train enthusiasts’ radar 20 years ago was found 25 kilometers south west of Chiang Mai on Highway 1269 by Phil Gibbins of Rider’s Corner sitting under a small roofed in area with four carriages nearby.

A quick contact with some Thailand based train enthusiasts yields the results that this 1936 Kawasaki steam engine was shipped over to Thailand by the Japanese for use during World War II, ferrying troops and munitions to Burma. These steam engines were quite durable and in use until the 1980’s. Two locomotives remain in Kanchanaburi and are pulled out for operation during River Kwai Festival in December. This particular engine was renamed the 744 after the Japanese left Thailand and was used for a further 25 years by the State Railway of Thailand.

Last seen in 1992-93 on the Mae Jo road outside a now defunct property development, or rather one that never quite got off the ground called Lanna Hill View, the engine was on display complete with carriages and a purpose built “station cover”. Mike Pass of Rail Asia said that train enthusiasts have been wondering about the disappearance of this mighty engine for many years and indeed Robert Tilley of the Writer’s Club even covered this steam engine in an article in Guidelines last year.

According to Mike Pass, nine of these locomotives remain preserved in Thailand while two of them were sent back to Japan one of which is still in use on the Oigawa tourist line from Tokyo to Nagoya and the other, the first locomotive to run on the Siam Burma railway, is set at Yasukuni shrine in Tokyo. The 744 was built in 1936 and is believed to be the only remaining survivor of Kawasaki production in South East Asia.

“It’s very ‘Alice in Wonderland’, this decaying resort and the carriages look as though they are lived in,” Phil said. He noted that the steam engine remains under a roof but grass and vines are growing up and around the old locomotive.

He added that it was too bad to see such an important piece of Thailand’s history decaying out in the jungle.
The Japanese Consulate General is currently investigating the old train and will issue a release when more information is uncovered.

Phil Gibbins is a dedicated motorcyclist who started RideAsia forum, a non –commercial motorcycle enthusiasts community based forum. It was here that he posted the photos of his find and here that fellow motorcyclists help him contact the train buffs. Phil, an affable Londoner, has been living in Chiang Mai for 3 years and with his wife has Rider’s Corner, which can’t be missed right on the North East corner inside the moat.

Convention Center scheduled to open next April

The new Convention Center is projected to be completed fully by April, 2013.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism and Sport Chumpon Silpa-archa was assured that the Convention Center would be completed by April, 2013 in a recent visit to Chiang Mai to assess construction of the new building.

Banharn Silpa-archa, Chairman and advisor on the project, said that he has visited the project 17 times since its beginning and has found problems in many parts of the project but it is expected that it the main building will be fully finished by October. However, he noted that the outbuildings including a Royal pavilion, the Administrative offices, laborers residences and maintenance buildings will begin construction in November, 2012. Landscaping would also begin at that time.

The Convention Center covers 335 rai of land and has been budgd at more than 3 billion baht. When construction is fully finished the Tourism Authority of Thailand will manage the center for about 8 months while a permanent administrator is considered.

Chinese Consul wishes Lin Ping a Happy Birthday

On his role as the new Consul General for the People’s Republic of China H.E. Zhang Weicai and his wife paid a visit to Lin Ping, Chiang Mai Zoo’s most famous resident on August 27, 2012 on the occasion of the 3rd month and 3 year anniversary of Lin Ping’s birth. Mr. Zhang presented a birthday card to Lin Ping and wished her a happy birthday, noting his thanks to the Zoo for taking such good care of the Giant Panda. He concluded that he understands the Thai people’s love for Lin Ping and will be sure and inform the Chinese government of their desire to take care of Lin Ping at the next opportunity. (Photo by Nopniwat Krailerg)

JJ Market joins in project to clamp down on underage drinking

JJ Market bar owners met with Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul and pledged to clean up the popular nighttime district, making it a safer place by prohibiting drugs and weapons as well as following noise and closing times regulations.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Club and bar owners in the JJ Market area met with Chiang Mai Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul to join in the pledge to crack down on underage drinking in the clubs, enforce closing times, and prohibit the use of drugs and weapons in the popular nighttime entertainment district.

The owners of 15 bars joined the meeting and signed the agreement to join the “White Night” project proposed by the Muang District Office to reduce the crime and problems that are occurring due to the sale of alcohol to those under the age of 20, as well as noise and closing times.

The project seeks to get all bar and nightclub owners to pledge to enforce the drinking laws strictly, to check for weapons and drugs as well as respect the communities around them by controlling noise levels and enforcing closing times.

Chiang Mai moves on illegal workers problem

Chiang Mai Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul is joined by Col. Akarawat Wutchot–Phokin of the Internal Security Operations Command in inspecting the Adsadathorn Road area.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Chiang Mai Governor M.L Panadda Diskul visited the Adsadathorn Road area which is well-known as a meeting point for illegal migrant workers to find work in Chiang Mai. The area has a high crime rate and the government wants to clean up the area within the next three months.

Col. Akarawat Wutchot–Phokin from the Internal Security Operations Command (ISOC) Chiang Mai said that a joint meeting was held on March 2012 with the Municipality and community leaders from the city. The major areas of trouble are Papheng Community in Chang Moi and Sri Mongkol in Patan.

More than 30 illegal houses in the two communities will be demolished and the residents will need to find legal housing to move to in the Patan area.

The Heritage of Highland Hemp

HSH Prince Bhisadej Rajani, the President of the Royal Project Foundation,
 viewed the exhibitions at the event held at the Royal Rajapruek Park.

By Nopniwat Krailerg
His Serene Highness Prince Bhisadej Rajani, the President of the Royal Project Foundation, presided over the opening ceremony of the exhibition titled, “Inspiration of Fiber: The Heritage of Highland Hemp” at the Royal Rajapruek Park on August 17, 2012. Deputy Governor of Chiang Mai Worakarn Yokying and Consuls attended the event as well.

Hosted by the Highland Research and Development Institute from August 17-19, 2012 at the Exhibition Building, the event was held to honor Her Majesty Queen Sirikit and her dedication to natural fibers and textiles.

A seminar on the production and processing of hemp was held to help brainstorm ways to promote the popular and environmentally friendly product. Additionally there were exhibitions of the textiles that can be woven from the fiber.

The event was held in cooperation with the Royal Project Foundation, the Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board, Food and Drug Administration Council, ONCB, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Institute. Additionally the Chiang Mai Health Sciences Center, Department of Medical Science and Academic and Folk Textiles Department at Chiang Mai University were involved. Chinese organizations that are heavily involved in the production and use of hemp as a natural fiber also attended.

ONCB reports on drugs in the North

Drug seizure numbers downs

Nopniwat Krailerg
Chiang Mai Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul chaired a press conference on the state of drug suppression and prevention in the North on August 14, 2012. He was joined by Wichai Chaimongkol, Director of the Office of Narcotics Control Board (ONCB) Region 5, Chiang Mai Provincial Police Deputy Commander Pol. Col. Veerawuth Niemnoi and Deputy Director of the Anti-Drugs in Northern Regional Borders Center Col. Chatree Setthakorn who reported on the progress in the past ten months.

Wichai Chaimongkol, Director of ONCB Region 5, said that the ASEAN community was working together to combat the smuggling of pseudoephedrine, a core component in the making methamphetamine as well the smuggling of drugs over the borders from Laos and Myanmar.

Myanmar police are coordinating with Thai police to find and extradite known wanted criminals back to Thailand, however if the person has dual citizenship then there has been difficulties in obtaining extradition such as the Thai/Myanmar citizen accused of smuggling pseudoephedrine in San Kamphaeng some months ago. The government is currently in discussions to find ways to bring the offenders to prosecution under Thai law.
Col. Chatree Setthakorn said that drug problems are also evident in the country of origin and that many drugs are brought over the borders opposite Chiang Rai and Mae Hong Son and opposite Laos.

He noted that the seizure of drugs has been dramatically reduced as smugglers are more cautious in bringing over large amounts and now have switched tactics to transporting small amounts over the border. The worst locations for drug smuggling are in Fang, Chaiprakan, Mae Ai and Pang Mapha. The past few years has seen arrests yielding 15 million amphetamines pills, 51 Kg of heroin and 44 kg of crystal methamphetamines. Pol. Col. Veerawuth Niemnoi added that 6,981 had been arrested for drug trafficking or for having been involved in the production of illegal drugs.

“Hong Kong Food Festival” with celebrity chef Peter Lai

Peter Lai has always known he wanted to be a chef. He can even date it precisely to May 10 1969. But all his other family members were in the same profession, but it was an easy decision for him to make. “If I hadn’t been a chef, I’d have chosen to be a jockey,” he beams, “but it was never a close race.”

Dim sum will be featured in the upcoming Hong Kong Food Festival.

Tune in to channel 7 every Wednesday night at 11.00 p.m. to enjoy the Thai chapter of this popular cookery show!!

Peter was born in Guangzhou, China, but moved to Hong Kong with his family when still a youngster. At the age of 17 he found himself as a cook helper in a Chinese restaurant but he quickly moved on and, in 1982, was appointed the assistant Chinese chef in the Lei Garden Restaurant, one of Hong Kong’s top 10.

In 1985 he joined the Hyatt Central Plaza in Bangkok as Chinese chef, followed by the top post at the then Hyatt Regency in Seoul, South Korea. After a successful spell in Australia, he returned to Bangkok in 1992 then the Hotel Intercontinental in Phnom Penh before returning to the Chaophaya Park Hotel.

He has long been an active member of the Thai Chefs’ Association, where he has been vice-president as well as the chair of the culinary competition committee. His wide experience has meant he’s very creative in Chinese cuisine and his Sunday Dim Sum lunches are legendary in the City of the Angels.

From 23rd September – 2nd October 2012, Peter Lai will be the visiting lunchtime guest chef creating mouth-watering Dim Sum lunches and in the evening he will be cooking a la carte menus at Sunflower Restaurant at CENTARA Duangtawan Hotel.

Peter says that his favorite food and signature dishes are almost always seafood, although in 2003 he did win a second-place trophy for the Super Champs Vegetarian Cuisine. He keeps updated because of his overseas tours and his participation in food exhibitions. Indeed, his international awards read like a catalogue of real success. In 1988 he won a gold medal in the Hong Kong Food Festival to be followed by 20 or so other honors from all over Asia. He’s also widely respected as a judge and has won several certificates of gastronomique appreciation from several countries in South East Asia. He says his proudest award was the international food judge certification and international Lion Club appreciation certificate with the specially minted coin from His Majesty the King. At the Centara Duangtawan Sunflower Restaurant, 24th floor. 053 905000 Ext. 3227. (PR)

Under the Spotlight

Commander of Wing 41

By Shana Kongmun
The roar of fighter engines taking off over Chiang Mai is a familiar sound to local residents and one that gets many wondering what exactly goes on at Wing 41. A fortunate meeting with the Commander of Wing 41 at the Inthakin Festival earlier in the year offered me the opportunity for an interview with the charming Khorat native. Group Captain Prayoon Thammathiwat has been in command of Wing 41 and its 800 personnel for a little over a year, prior to that he was stationed in Don Mueang and before that he was Deputy Commander of Wing 23 in UdonThani.

Group Captain Prayoon Thammathiwat, current Commander of Wing 41 sits underneath photos of all the past commanders dating back to the establishment of Wing 41 in 1977. He noted that only the current commander’s photo is in color, when he is promoted his photo will be replaced with a black and white one as well.

The Group Captain noted that the main purpose of Wing 41 is as a training base for pilots and Air Force personnel, to ensure their readiness in case there is ever a crisis. He noted that the pilots we hear taking off over Chiang Mai do not fly near the Burma border, “We do not fly near the border, it might cause some conflict. The pilots fly in a specially designated training area only.”

Grp. Cpt. Prayoon added that another main task of Wing 41 is to support the Royal Rainmaking aircraft which are deployed to the North from Phitsanulok when they are needed. Additionally they operate the water tankers that are used not only to put out forest fires but to spray water in the skies over Chiang Mai when the smog and haze season strikes in February and March. He added that they sent out tankers regularly this past smog season to try and bring the haze down to safe levels.

However, he does not allow the trainee pilots to fly when the smog and haze are that thick. “I look out my window and if I can’t see Doi Suthep they don’t fly because landing is dangerous. When visibility is low the pilots must land on instruments and that is difficult for our new pilots. It is not a problem for our instructor pilots as they are experienced. I worry about the young pilots in these conditions however.”

The Group Captain added that next year will see another Cobra Gold exercise and the Air Force side will be headquartered in Chiang Mai, Wing 41 will provide the support aircraft for the 3rd Region of the Army. He noted that every branch joins Cobra Gold with the next exercises taking place in February next year.

The Air Museum is a favorite of the Commander; he added that the Museum is open to the general public every day except public holidays. “Just check in with the officer at the gate and leave your ID card. Groups should contact us ahead of time; we get school children in every week. I order in ice cream for the little ones, they really love the museum.”

Children’s Day is another big hit at Wing 41 although a central committee in Bangkok actually coordinates the aircraft. Chiang Mai will send some of their aircraft to other bases while others will send theirs to Chiang Mai, for example, he notes, the F-16s come from all over Thailand. Despite this past year’s tragedy, the day is a still a huge draw for the children of Chiang Mai who get to clamber over and in the aircraft. His Deputy Commander added that it takes well over a month for Children’s Day preparations.

This father of two met his wife, a nurse in the Air Force 20 years ago, she is now stationed in Bangkok as a Commander herself and “she is the most beautiful woman,” he said with a broad smile. He plans to retire at the mandatory retirement age of 60, noting that while it is possible to retire early he has no intentions of doing so. He hopes to be an orchid farmer, perhaps in Udon Thani, a town he grew to love.

Although, he added that Chiang Mai was interesting, “I love the great variety of food, the culture and that there are so many people from many different countries here to talk with.”
K. Prayoon was raised on a farm in Nakhon Ratchasima and said when he was a small boy in the rice fields with the buffalo he would look up at the passing airplanes and dream of flying. Unfortunately, his very busy schedule doesn’t give him the time for the flying he loves, “I miss flying but my time is limited,” he said wistfully.

Chiang Mai Crime round up

Two songthaew drivers arrested for drugs

Mae Rim resident Rong Thama-Aksorn has been charged with stealing from Wat Jet Yod.

Nopniwat Krailerg
A police tipoff led to the arrest of two red car or songthaews drivers in Chiang Mai on August 18, 2012. Police were told that a songthaew driver was selling drugs around the city. The police set up an undercover sting operation and met with Yutthana Somsuk age 28 at the Big C Hang Dong intersection to purchase drugs. They arrested him with 25 Yaba or methamphetamine pills hidden in his truck. He confessed to police that he had gotten them from another songthaew driver and police then arrested Preeda Boontha age 42, with18 Yaba pills hidden in his songthaew.

The police announced the arrest of 5 Cambodian nationals on August 20, 2012 who were wantedfor picking pockets and handbags on the Sunday Walking Street Market, Wualai Walking Street Market and at Central Airport Plaza. The police had asked people to report any suspicious people as it was known a gang of pickpockets was targeting shoppers. The Cambodian gang was reported by the guesthouse owner and when police came to search found iPhones, Blackberrys and HTC phones, wallets, and currencies from the U.S., the Philippines, the EU and Indonesia. The gang had fled the province but an arrest warrant for them resulted in their arrest in Bangkok.

Several instances of petty theft in the past few months saw monks at Wat Jet Yod calling in police to capture a thief who had been jimmying the donation box and stealing donations. CCTV captured the image of Rong Thama-Aksorn, 34, of Mae Rim district in the temple prying open the donation box with a screwdriver. Assistant Abbot Phrakru Worrawuth Jirawuththo said that over the last 5 months many donated items had been stolen and the temple was forced to install CCTV cameras to catch the culprit. Police were called in to view the tape and arrested the man on August 22, 2012 charging him with theft.

Case of 93 year old Australian accused of rape postponed

Karl Joseph Kraus, age 93, is carried from the prison van to a wheelchair before going to court on August 20, 2012. The 93 year old has been charged with the rape of 4 underage girls.

Nopniwat Krailerg
93 year old Australian Karl Joseph Kraus was brought to court on August 20 to face trial on charges that he raped four young Thai girls in Tarn Ingdoi village in Doi Saket in June of 2010.

Mr. Kraus was extradited back to Thailand after fleeing to Myanmar several months ago. He was brought to court on August 9, but the case was postponed until August 20 due to the defendant’s poor health.

He arrived at court in the prison van and required support to get in the wheelchair as he appeared tired and unable to walk. His lawyer informed Judge Apichart Chimruang that the defendant suffers from Alzheimer’s and was unable to contribute to his own defense as he has memory loss.

The judge, however, refused to dismiss the case and ordered the prosecution to prepare the witnesses by October 5, 2012. He also ordered that Mr. Kraus be examined by doctors at Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital to see if he is fit enough to stand trial.

Karl Kraus, a former electrical engineer from Australia retired to live in Chiang Mai and was charged with the rape of 4 girls under the age of 15 in 2010. He fled to Myanmar while on bail and was re-arrested there and returned to Thailand on August 3, 2012.

Schizophrenic woman murders and dismembers her children

Nopniwat Krailerg
The Deputy Minister of Health, Dr. Surawit Khonsomboon and his team visited Suanprung Psychiatric Hospital on August 21, 2012 to review the progress of the case of murder that shocked the nation.

On August 4, 2012 a Lahu hilltribe woman, Namai Jakoo, was found with the dismembered bodies of her two daughters, ages 5 years old and 1 year and 6 months. Shocked family members had come to visit the woman after her husband was away working to find the bodies and some body parts in a pot boiling on the stove. There was no evidence that she had eaten them however.

Ms. Namai was admitted to Suanprung Hospital in 2007 and was treated for mental illness there. She was given medication and released to be treated by doctors at Fang Hospital. She told authorities that she had been working at a job in Lamphun and had not replaced her medicine for 2 months which caused the break with reality that led to the murder of her children.

The woman told the psychiatrists that she heard the voice of her recently deceased father telling her to kill her two children. She expressed terrible regret and remorse, stating that she loved her children very much but without the medicine she could not distinguish what was a hallucination and what was real.

The Deputy Minister said the lack of psychiatric treatment and of access to medicines led to this shocking tragedy. He added that it was imperative that measures be taken to prevent incidents happening again. He said that all hospitals nationwide need to join together to provide public mental health services.

Thai couple found strangled to death in Hang Dong

Police believe murder-suicide

Nopniwat Krailerg
Hang Dong police were called to a home in Roong Arun village in Hang Dong at 5.30 p.m. where they found the bodies of Tippawan Kamphum, age 30, employed at Chiang Mai University and Kanit Boontham, age 25 and a mechanic at the Honda center. Relatives of the married couple were there when police arrived, and were distraught over finding the bodies of the couple.

Ms. Tippawan had been strangled with a belt while Mr. Kanit was found hanging from electrical wires tied to a steel beam in the roof. Police believe that jealousy caused Mr. Kanit to strangle his wife and then hang himself. The police will continue the investigation to ascertain if it was a murder-suicide.

Southern drug gang caught in Chiang Rai

150 million baht in drugs seized

Nopniwat Krailerg
Acting on a tip off that drug gangs from the South were trafficking drugs through Mae Chan, Chiang Rai, a police checkpoint was set up and two men from were found with crystal methamphetamine (Ya Ice) and heroin hidden in a black Ford at 2:30 a.m. on August 27, 2012.

Police announced the arrest of Abdul Rorning age 40 from Pattani province and Maming Hayee-Manahae age 31 from Narathiwat province at Police Bureau Region 5 on August 28, 2012 with 15 kg of crystal methamphetamine and 21 kg of heroin valued at more than 150 million Baht hidden under the car. The two men were planning on transporting the drugs to Hat Yai to be smuggled into Malaysia for sale.
The two men confessed to police that they had been paid 100,000 Baht each to transport the drugs down to Hat Yai for onward sale in Malaysia.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Region 5 Pol. Maj. Gen. Chamnan Ruwdrew said that reports had been received of vehicles modified to transport drugs so that they were hidden from a basic inspection. He added that they were working in close cooperation with Region 9 Police in the South and Malaysia police to hunt down the ringleaders.

3 dead in school bus accident

2 students among the dead

Rescuers clamber over the double decker tour bus rescuing school children trapped inside the bus that flipped over on impact.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Police and rescue teams were called to the scene of a horrific accident on August 15, 2012 at 5:30 p.m. in Doi Saket when a school bus carrying 58 people. The double decker bus, carrying students and teachers from Tambon 2 Municipal School in Taphanhin district in Phichit Province was coming from a visit to Chiang Rai along the Chiang Rai – Chiang Mai road when it swerved into an oncoming vehicle.

More than 20 rescuers were on hand to cut the bus open and rescue the students as well as the passengers in the car. The injured students were rushed to Doi Saket Hospital. Jirayutch Rabprakhathum, a Mathayom grade six student, Chakaphan Nakket, a Mathayom grade three student and the passenger of the pickup truck that was hit by the bus, Mrs Bongkhot Jaipin all died at the hospital.

The driver reported that the brakes on the bus had failed causing the accident. This is the second such accident to occur in the same area, in January of 2007 a tour bus carrying teachers from Chanthaburi crashed and twenty one teachers were killed.

ONCB seize property valued at more than 15 million Baht

Chiang Rai district office investigated for issuing fake ID

Nopniwat Krailerg
In two separate cases the Office of Narcotics Control Board (ONCB) seized the property of a man accused of smuggling pseudoephedrine to be used in the manufacture of methamphetamine in Doi Saket and a Chiang Dao couple accused of drug smuggling after police found 95 methamphetamine pills in their house.

On August 15, 2012 police searched the home of Somchai Rakyodying in Doi Saket after the accused failed to appear for an arrest warrant issued in February. It is believed that the accused, who was charged with smuggling pseudoephedrine to use in the manufacture of methamphetamine, fled to Myanmar to escape prosecution. Thai authorities are working with the Myanmar police to locate and extradite the accused.

Also found in his home were both Thai and Burmese ID cards, the Thai ID card was issued in Mae Suai in Chiang Rai in 1996 and the police are investigating the official who issued the ID card as it was reported that the suspect paid for the Thai ID card.

Police seized three homes owned by the accused under the Money Laundering Act of 1999 which allows for the seizure of property gained from the proceeds of illegal drug sales.

A Chiang Dao couple also saw their property seized under the Act after police arrested them with 95 methamphetamine pills. Police seized three vehicles, two motorcycles, ten bank accounts, a collection of Buddhist amulets, and two automatic weapons in the possession of Anong and Rujee Tibnoi of Chiang Dao. The value of the property seized is believed to be around 5 million Baht.

Road traffic safety campaign launched

Students take part in the traffic safety course that the municipality will hold at schools around the city in a bid to reduce accidents and fatalities and promote the use of helmets and safe driving. (Photo courtesy of Chiang Mai Muncipality)

The Chiang Mai Municipality is launching an awareness and education campaign to try and reduce the number of road accidents and fatalities from accidents in Chiang Mai.

In 2538 (1995) the average daily national death toll was 45 people killed and 140 people injured. In 2552 (2009) the number of accidents reached 5598 with 285 killed and 30,332 injured only in Chiang Mai Province. An average daily death of .78 with 83 injured per day.

The government plans to target high accident areas and what causes accidents in these particular areas, redouble law enforcement efforts, begin education programs and start teaching children in school regarding traffic safety and facilitate the use of crosswalks and pedestrian lights.

Reduce underage drinking

Over 100 students took part in a rally to reduce the problem of underage drinking. They pledged to stop drinking and to encourage their friends to do the same at the parade that started in front of the Chiang Mai Municipality and ended up in Waroros Market. The government is working to reduce the problem of underage drinking around the city and many bars and clubs have agreed to enforce drinking ages and to check ID’s of customers.

HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn celebrates 20th anniversary of Prostheses Foundation

Formula 1 proposed for Chiang Mai

Death Railway train re-discovered

Convention Center scheduled to open next April

Chinese Consul wishes Lin Ping a Happy Birthday

JJ Market joins in project to clamp down on underage drinking

Chiang Mai moves on illegal workers problem

The Heritage of Highland Hemp

ONCB reports on drugs in the North

“Hong Kong Food Festival” with celebrity chef Peter Lai

Under the Spotlight

Chiang Mai Crime round up

Case of 93 year old Australian accused of rape postponed

Schizophrenic woman murders and dismembers her children

Thai couple found strangled to death in Hang Dong

Southern drug gang caught in Chiang Rai

3 dead in school bus accident

ONCB seize property valued at more than 15 million Baht

Road traffic safety campaign launched

Reduce underage drinking



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