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Government proposes controversial cable car to Doi Pui again

The project has always met with strong local resistance

The Hat Yai Cable Car in Muang municipality area of Songkla province is one of the cable cars that is used as an example for the project. (File photo by Nopniwat Krailerg)

Chiang Mai Mail reporters
A project long opposed by Chiang Mai people because the planned route cuts through sacred sites has been proposed again by the Pinkanakorn Development Agency; a cable car from the Night Safari to the peak of Doi Pui and Doi Pha Dam. The planned route would cut through Wat Phra That Doi Kham, Wat Phra That Doi Suthep and Phuping Palace, considered significant religious and cultural places for Thai people.
The meeting was held on November 26, 2013 at the Holiday Inn Hotel Chiang Mai and saw Deputy Governor Adisorn Kamnerdsiri preside over the opening. The project would cover about 10 kilometers, cutting through National parks. A study and analysis on the environmental impact was started in August 2013 by experts from Department of Environmental Science, Kasetsart University and Tesco Company Limited and are expected to be completed by June 2014.
Adisorn Kamnerdsiri Chiang Mai Deputy Governor said that while tourism must be developed the development must study the various effects before being implemented. He added that while it is necessary to compete with other countries by adding value to what we have but we must not compromise on the environment and culture.
Cable car companies such as Hatyai Cable Car, Singapore Cable Car, Ngong Ping Cable Car, Vietnamese Cable Car, Langkawi Cable Car and Genting Highlands in Malaysia took part in the meeting. The cable car project was supported by the Member of Parliament in the area, and is under the control of Deputy Prime Minister Plodprasop Suraswadi, the supervisor the Pinkanakorn Development Agency.
The project has been proposed before but has met with heavy local resistance.
 


Foreigners & hill tribes honor HM the King in 3rd Chiang Mai Multicultural Festival

December 3 at Tha Pae Gate

Ruchuchai Potha, President of the We Love the King Club (International) and organizers for the press conference to announce the event.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Everyone in Chiang Mai is welcome to join the 3rd Chiang Mai Multicultural Festival in Honor of HM the King on December 3, not just foreigners but everyone, according to Ruchuchai Potha, President of the We Love the King Club (International). The event was first organized by K. Ruchuchai because he had so many foreigners ask him how they too could join in the festivities honoring HM the King. He realized there was a need among the foreign community to show their love and respect for HM King Bhumibol Adulyadej.
The event, which features a parade of all nationalities, organizations and groups in Chiang Mai will begin from JJ Market at 3 p.m. The parade will depart at 4 p.m. and reach Tha Pae Gate at 5:30 p.m. There incoming Mayor Tussanai Buranupakorn will give a speech and a candlelight ceremony for HM the King with Governor Wichien Puthiwinyoo, will be held at 6:19 p.m. on December 3, 2013.
The event, organized by the We Love the King Club (International) and the Chiang Mai Employment Office will feature a parade by organizations and tribal groups in Chiang Mai and an elephant from Mae Taman Elephant Camp will join the merit making to honor HM the King and send him best wishes for good health.
The candlelight ceremony will be followed by hill tribe cultural and music performances, Northern Thai and International music shows at Tha Pae Gate form 7 p.m. to midnight. All are welcome to join in the event, K. Ruchuchai said and reminded people to wear either their national costume or pink or yellow to honor HM the King.


HM the King to grant public audience on his birthday, December 5

His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej will grant a grand public audience on his birthday, December 5, at Klai Kangwon Palace in Hua Hin, according to Deputy Prime Minister/Commerce Minister Niwatthamrong Boonsongpaisan.
Mr Niwatthamrong said he was informed by the Royal Household Bureau that the monarch has granted permission for a grand public audience to be held for the public to pay tribute to the King in celebration of his 86th birthday.
The auspicious event will take place at Klai Kangwon Palace in Hua Hin district of Prachuap Khiri Khan province, southwest of Bangkok at 10.30am.
The royal guards of honour will also give an oath of allegiance to HM the King.
Permanent Secretary to the Office of the Prime Minister Tongthong Chandransu said that the event would be broadcast on national television. The government will conduct many celebratory activities between December 1 and 10 to commemorate the auspicious occasion, he said.
A candle-lit ceremony offering good wishes to HM the King will be held at Sanam Luang at 7.25pm in tandem with ceremonies at designated places nationwide, he said. (MCOT online news)


Cancer patients taken to heart

Fundraisers to assist people with cancer

Nopniwat Krailerg
Cancer patients are receiving assistance from the public through donations to the Mind Clinic at Wat Jed Yod in conjunction with Chiang Mai City Hall and the Chiang Mai Public Health Office. The activity was announced at City Hall on November 19, 2013 and began on November 24 with the Cycling for Health, Eating Safe Food” which saw people cycle from Wat Jed Yod to JJ Market to raise awareness of the needs of cancer patients.

Activities to assist cancer patients are being held at JJ Market and around town beginning December 1, 2013.

Other activities will take place on December 1, the“1 Warm Up Street Fighter Doi Suthep Challenge” route cycling from Huay Kaew Arboretum-Doi Suthep- Huay Kaew Arboretum from 7.30 a.m. to noon and the project “Be Good for Our King by Taking Your Heart to The Wheel” from December 4 to 6 at JJ Market from 10.00 a.m. to 10.00 p.m. The official opening ceremony will be on December 4 and include discussion on cancer, instructions on how to care for patients after chemotherapy and to understand the guidelines for the treatment of cancer, booths to educate about the care of cancer patients and live withcancer, organic vegetables shops, volunteer booths, products for cancer patients and special activities such as Vespa rally around the city moat from 8.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m. on December 5 and a candlelight ceremony for His Majesty the King.
Anthika Chaowakiratipong or DJ Andy, a cancer patient receiving treatment, said that while most Phase 2 cancer patients receive chemotherapy and radiation treatment that is covered by Social Welfare Health Care patients still have problems coping with the cost of travel and accommodation during treatment. The project organized these activities to assist cancer patients with the costs of travel and accommodation during treatment.


Father of the Royal Rainmaking Day honors HM the King

November 14 honors HM the King’s work on rainmaking

HM King Bhumibol Adulyadej is honored for his tireless efforts in rainmaking and scientific water management for Thailand on November 14, Father of the Royal Rainmaking Day.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Chiang Mai officials joined Thailand in honoring HM the King’s work in rainmaking on Father of the Royal Rainmaking Day on November 14, 2013. Father of the Royal Rainmaking Day honors that day that HM the King donated his funds to launch the Royal Rainmaking Project in 1955. He had seen the cycle of drought that farmers faced and had researched ways to combat that drought through rainmaking and scientific water management.
At Chiang Mai City Hall on November 14, 2013 Governor Wichien Puthiwinyoo presided over the Ceremony in Honor of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej on Royal Rainmaking Day. The ceremony was held by Chiang Mai Agricultural Office representing the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives for the day that was established by Cabinet resolution on August 2002.


Diabetes in focus on World Diabetes Day

City offers free tests and checkups

Nopniwat Krailerg
According to a report by the World Health Organization one in 13 Thais suffers from diabetes and it is a growing problem for Thailand as lifestyles change. Diabetes increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes at an early age and can lead to premature death. Over time, diabetes can damage the heart blood vessels, eyes, kidneys, and nerves.
To highlight this issue and offer education and checkups the Chiang Mai Municipality took part in World Diabetes Day on November 14, 2013. The opening ceremony was presided over by Acting City Clerk Sruamchai Meesomsakdi, Deputy Chiang Mai Municipal Clerk.
K. Sruamchai noted that diabetes is a growing public health challenge for Chiang Mai and Thailand with the age of affected people getting lower and lower. He noted that people need to change their diets and lifestyle to avoid diabetes through exercise, avoiding smoking and drinking alcohol.
Many local people joined the event to learn more about diabetes and its prevention and to take part in checkups that included preliminary screening, blood pressure checks and blood sugar tests for free. There were exhibitions on the effects of diabetes to educate people to its dangers and to teach ways to combat and avoid diabetes.


Chiang Mai’s own Princess to be honored on Princess Dara Rasamee Day

December 8 & 9

The magnificent Dara Prirom Palace, the home of Princess Dara Rasamee and now a museum, will host the celebrations honoring Princess Dara Rasamee on December 8 and 9, 2013.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Chiang Mai’s beloved Princess Dara Rasamee is honored every year at the Dara Pirom Palace in Mae Rim for her love and devotion to King Rama V and her tireless efforts to help local farmers, as well as promote local arts and culture. She was a strong supporter of the local handicrafts and was a major influence in promoting local handicrafts. She founded an experimental plantation named “Suan Jao Sabai” that grew from her interest in agriculture and her wish to help Northern Thai farmers. She grew several new rose breeds which she had received from the English Rose Institute. Her favorite was the big pink rose which was later named “Chulalongkorn” in honor of her husband.
Princess Dara Rasamee Day will begin with the launch of an exhibition at Dara Prirom Palace on December 8 at 5:30 p.m. The exhibition, titled “The 80th anniversary of the passing of Princess Dara Rasamee” will also have traditional Thai dances and a welcoming party in the Northern style. On December 9 at 6:30 a.m. Governor Wichien Puthiwinyoo will lay a wreath in front of the Dara Rasamee Monument and will also attend the Mae Rim Festival Fair which will include an elephant parade, tribute procession, parade of dancers and people costumed in Lanna clothes. There will also be concerts, local products for sale and handicraft making exhibitions.
Chulalongkorn University cooperated with Chiang Mai Province, Mae Rim District, the Border Patrol Police Bureau, Chulalongkorn University Alumni Association Northern, institutions in Chiang Mai, and Chiang Mai people to hold the ceremony honoring the daughter of King Inthawichayanon, the 7th Ruler of Chiang Mai. She was one of the favorite princess consorts of Chulalongkorn, King Rama V of Siam, and their relationship cemented the ties between the Lanna Kingdom and Siam. Dara Pirom Palace was built after King Rama VI gave his permission to Princess Dara Rasamee to return to her childhood home of Chiang Mai after King Rama V passed away. Princess Dara Rasamee is revered in Chiang Mai for her work in promoting local handicrafts and assisting farmers.


“Pathway to the King”

Inspired by His Majesty’s work in the North

Nopniwat Krailerg
The Faculty of Mass Communications at Chiang Mai University launched the project “Pathway of the King” featuring photos video clips and radio documentaries on the HM the King’s work in the North. The event, launched at CMU in cooperation with alumni of the faculty on November 20, 2013, features various contests celebrating the work of HM the King.
Dr. Jiraporn Witayasakpun, the Dean of the Faculty of Mass Communication, Chiang Mai University said that the project “Pathway of the King” was held to celebrate the occasion of His Majesty the King’s 86th Birthday 86 on December 5, 2013 as well as the 50th anniversary of HM the King’s work in the North and also celebrate 50th Anniversary of Chiang Mai University.
There was a photography workshop on November 20 and a photo contest. There is a video clip contest on the “300 second story of the King”, a photography book in honor of HM the King, also an exhibition whic shows the work and the projects of HM the King, as well as aTV documentary, and radio documentary contest. People who want to take part in the contest can ask for information at www.facebook.com/YangPhrabathThiYatra or contact Public Relations Coordinator tel.089-779-5732.


Red shirts submit letter supporting Constitutional changes

Phichit Tamoon, a UDD leader in Chiang Mai, submitted a letter to the government calling for a push to pass amendments to the Constitution.

Chiang Mai Mail reporters
Around twenty members of the red shirt group the United Front of Democracy Against Dictatorship (UDD) Chiang Mai gathered at City Hall on November 22, 2013 to submit a letter to Chiang Mai Governor Wichien Puthiwinyoo to submit to the President of Parliament on their behalf.
The letter, which was received by Thanakorn Pramoonphol, Assistant Chief of Security Affairs Group of Chiang Mai, informs the legislature of their support for amendments to the Constitution B.E. 2550, Section 291, in rotation 3 which is awaiting a vote in the House of Representatives.
Phichit Tamoon, a UDD leader in Chiang Mai, said that the group wants the rule of the country to be the rule of people; that people should have the right to create rules for living together. Rights and obligations should be together, should not be use one for personal profit but should be in the public interest and called on the government to rush amending the constitution to meet these goals.


Anti-government demonstrators call on members of Parliament to resign

Nimmanhaemin area demonstration organized via Facebook

Around 300 people marched from the CMU Health Park down Nimmanhaemin Road on November 24, 2013 calling on the government to dissolve Parliament and have new elections.

Chiang Mai Mail Reporters
Nearly 300 people from a Facebook group and other Chiang Mai residents gathered at CMU Health Park on November 24, 2013 to demand that the Prime Minister drop a draft law amendment proposed by a Senator and called on the Member of Parliament and the Senator who proposed the bill to resign in responsibility for the proposal.
They called on the government to not ask for a royal pardon for former Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, and want the Members of Parliament and the 312 Senators who refused to accept the judgment of the Constitutional Court to apologize to the Court and vow to never do so again. They also want the same group and the President of Parliament and the President of the Senate to resign for causing offense to the Courts. They called on the government to dissolve Parliament and call for new elections for their role in causing the difficult situation in Thailand now.
Throughout the rally, protestor whistled and yelled out to drive out the government. As they moved peacefully from CMU Health Park to the Rincome intersection, they sang the Thai National Anthem and then dispersed.


CMU promotes social responsibility in the community

CMU is working to develop programs for community development and integration for the areas around the university.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Chiang Mai University has developed a policy to support and promote social responsibility in the neighborhoods around the University under its new University Social Responsibility program (USR). The school recognizes that it is a part of the city and uses the resources from its surrounding communities.
Professor Pongruk Sribanditmongkol, Vice President for Planning and Development of Chiang Mai University said that the University was working to establish cooperation with the community surrounding the university in areas such as Suthep sub district, Chang Phuak sub district, Nimmanhaemin area and Klong Mae Kha. They plan on researching the needs of the local community and help solve social problems by focusing on how various segments of the university can be a part of the community.
Dr.Pongruk pointed out that community should be involved in the co-development of the area, starting from building a common understanding through dialogue between Chiang Mai University and Suthep municipality and Chang Phuak municipality, joint research to uncover the problems of the community and created sustainable development for the area in collaboration.
The University also plans to establish agencies; the Institute for Social Research will work on community development, the Faculty of Mass Communications promote tourism, , promoting eco-tourism by Faculty of Mass Communication, the Faculty of Medical Technology will be responsible for Children in community development projects and Faculty of Architecture will tackle city planning and community responsibility.


Environment Day activities to combat smoky season

JJ Market hosts green event

Chiang Mai Mail reporters
Thai Environment Day will be celebrated at JJ Market from December 1 – 3, 2013 and will work to combat fire and smoke, promote a green economy under the sufficiency economy principles, green eating and other important environmental issues. Governor Wichien Puthiwinyoo will preside over the opening ceremony to be held on December 2. Thai Environment Day is held nationwide on December 4 after a Cabinet resolution.
Prayad Ananpradit, head of the Environment Section, acting chief of The Natural Resources and Environment, Chiang Mai office said that many years ago, Chiang Mai had held an event fpr Thai Environment Day that was joined by about 20 agencies such as The Natural Resources and Environment Chiang Mai office, private agencies, public network, and people. This year, the event will be held from December 1 – 3, 2013 at Jing Jai Market (JJ Market). There are many activities in the event such as the sale of agricultural products, OTOP products, products from 13 tribes in Chiang Mai, organic vegetables for sale, drawing contests, Quiz Competitions, exhibitions by the attendees more.
“The government is aware of the air pollution and smoke problem and has commanded that we work quickly to solve the problem. This year it will start from December, 2013 to March, 2014. Smoke from burning in the forests, farming land, and plains are the main problems according to information from the last 7 years. Chiang Mai province has prepared for the situation already. During the earlier part of 2013, Chiang Mai had particulate measure point over the standard 212 mg/cubic meter, lower than year 2007, which reached a record high at 382 mg/cubic meter. Wind pushes smoke from fires in farms and forests into Chiang Mai, said Prayad.


CMU has big plans for 2014

New hospital for elderly patients, Science Park

Nopniwat Krailerg
The President of Chiang Mai University Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nivet Nantajit talked about the goals and plans for the university next year, on the 50th anniversary of its founding.

The President of Chiang Mai University Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nivet Nantajit reviewed the goals for the university on the occasion of its 50th anniversary next year.

He said that CMU had always produced quality students that use their knowledge to help develop the country. Dr. Nivet said that the main missions of CMU were providing a quality education, developing research and innovation, meeting community needs, and preserving religion, culture and the environment.
CMU has worked to develop the quality of its syllabus to follow the Ministry of Education. All undergraduate courses have been fully developed and a few graduate courses still remain to be developed. He noted that the university emphasizes the quality of the students; with each student graduating with a notion of social justice and morality.
CMU plans to go fully wireless in 2014 with WIFI expected to be installed to cover all areas of the university.
CMU supports research scholarships for instructors who graduated from the doctorate program at the cost of 100,000 -150,000 baht per each project. There is a total of 100 scholarships with a budget around 10 million baht.
CMU plans to be a part of the development of areas around the university including the Nimmahaemin area Chang Puak, and Suthep. Also more far flung areas such as Phrao and Om Koi Districts, the Haripunchai Campus in Lamphun and the Samut Sakhon campus.
This year they have built a Science Park and plan to build a medical hub offsite after the Cabinet approved the agreement in 2012. CMU plans to build a hospital for elder care in 2014 to meet the growing needs of an aging society.
CMU established the Lanna Study Center to be the center of knowledge of Lanna society and history. The university also developed 36 international courses to help prepare students for the upcoming AEC and also plan to build the CMU ASEAN center.


Juvenile and Family Court Judges take their vows

Preecha Puangsombat, Deputy Chief Justice of Mae Hong Son Juvenile and Family Court led associate judges of the Court in a ceremony to take their vows as Judges of the Juvenile and Family Court Region 5. Judges from Chiang Mai, Phayao, and Mae Hong Son took part in the ceremony that was presided over by Supat Yuutanom, Chief Judge of the Central Juvenile and Family Court on November 22, 2013 at Tharathong Ballroom, Holiday Inn Hotel in Chiang Mai.


Alternative energy eco car promoted at Motor Show

Charoenrit Sa-nguansat, Vice Governor of Chiang Mai is joined by Chairat Yapanya, President of Chiang Mai Automobile Club, at the grand opening of the 23d annual Chiang Mai Motor Show.

Chiang Mai Mail reporters
The Chiang Mai Automobile Club hosted the 23rd annual Chiang Mai Motor Show at Big C Don Chan from November 22 – December 1, 2013 under the theme “Alternative Energy Cars” as part of the government drive for energy security.
Chairat Yapanya, the President of Chiang Mai Automobile Club said that in the last 2-3 years Thailand has faced an economic crisis with an impact on energy security. The government recognizes the importance of alternative energy sources to that the country can be as self-reliant as possible. The Ministry of Energy has established a 15-year renewable energy development plan to promote and encourage the development and use of renewable energy in four main groups including natural energy, Bioenergetics, Natural gas (NGV) and biofuels, soas to reduce energy imports from abroad that currently cost the country over 400,000 million baht per year.
Charoenrit Sa-nguansat, Vice Governor of Chiang Mai presided over the opening ceremony of Chiang Mai Motor Show on November 22, 2013. The event showcased leading auto manufacturers as well as motorbikes and motocross. Activities included the Nimseeseng Ban Lookpong Enduro Cross Championship annual 2013 & Cycle Cross, a country song singing and dancing contest, the Chiang Mai Governor Cup and Chiang Mai Motor Show Vintage MX 2013which featured vintage motocross racing, a classic motorbike contest and a classic car show.


Huge Challenges Facing Relief Efforts for Philippines Typhoon Survivors

A truck lies on its side beside the main road in Borbon Town, Northern Cebu in eastern Philippines an hour after Typhoon Haiyan made a landfall. (Photo: C. Baldicantos)

Jofelle Tesorio and Ariel Carlos
Typhoon Haiyan, known locally as Yolanda, was one of the strongest typhoons to ever hit the country. Nationwide, the death toll has reached nearly 4,000 people with more than one thousand missing. The coastal areas of Tacloban, Leyte, the hardest hit province, has been left in ruins, with flattened houses and streets littered with debris. Typhoon survivors gather in an open area to receive much needed food, water and other aid.
The Philippine’s Red Cross was among the first relief organizations to land on Leyte after the airport and roads had been cleared. But the group’s director, Richard Gordon, says it’s still difficult to reach the more remote areas.
“We’ve not been able to provide food adequately… It’s very hard to reach everybody… The challenge is bringing them all between Cebu by air or by boat to get to Tacloban and to the peripheral areas. The areas that are facing the Pacific Ocean which have been badly damaged.”
Tacloban was one of the cities hit hardest by the typhoon. No building has been left untouched.
President Benigno Aquino III is now in Leyte Province overseeing relief and recovery operations.
“Am I satisfied with the pace of the relief operations? I’m never satisfied when it comes to addressing the needs of our people. Whatever is achieved now I always try to increase the efficiencies of all systems of government. But again, this was in a sense a typhoon of such magnitude and such strength that it really overwhelmed the systems that were already in place.”
Several days before the typhoon hit the central Philippines, he broadcast a warning on national television.
“The waves could reach as high as 5 to 6 feet in the affected areas. Defence secretary Volt Gazmin and Interior secretary Mar Roxas are already in Leyte to lead the preparations for the landfall of Yolanda. All our disaster coordinating councils, local and national are also preparing.”
But many thought it would be just another typhoon. The country normally experiences around 20 a year. Preparations were scant and not all the would-be-affected residents were evacuated to safer ground. As a result, the province of Leyte and its neighboring islands suffered the most damage. More than 3,000 people were killed and almost an entire coastal community was wiped out. Relief groups are facing enormous challenges to help the victims, says Philippines Red Cross director, Richard Gordon.
“Initially it was the fact that we had no information. Second, there is no telephones, no cell phones, there is no communication…Third, there are a lot of debris on the streets…electric posts, trees, even houses in the middle of the streets that have been blown away. It was quite hard to get in.”
Because of the country’s topography, its many scattered islands, getting relief to the affected areas will take time.
President Aquino says he’s thankful for international aid.
“One of the first countries that helped was the United States of America. We have three C130s in our Airforce and they provided massive lift capability...They actually sent a carrier battle group together with all components that enable us to reach in more timely manner all of these isolated island villages and municipalities.”
In Palawan province, the artists’ community is also doing its bit by organising a benefit concert that will help areas that have not been the focus of attention. “We thought we would do an art fair where we would sale art works at a lower price but the proceeds would go to calamity fund,” says one of the organizers, Dinggot Conde-Prieto. Musician Pat Marquez has composed a song for the victims of Typhoon Haiyan. “The title of the song is ‘This is the Time’,” he says.
“I have noticed that the government has been very slow in its response, in reaching the affected areas. So I thought of composing a song about the devastation in other areas like Coron so people can be inspired to help the victims.”
With a typhoon of this magnitude, it will take time to rebuild lives and homes but there is hope. For the moment, however, they need all the help they can get.
This article was first broadcast on Asia Calling, a regional current affairs radio program produced by Indonesia’s independent radio news agency KBR68H and broadcast in local languages in 10 countries across Asia. It is published in conjunction with the Faculty of Mass Communications, Chiang Mai University. You can find more stories from Asia Calling at www.portalkbr.com/asiacalling.


Korean gang arrested in 100 million baht gambling ring

Five men were arrested for working without a work permit and providing opportunities for gambling without permission after coordinating with South Korean police to arrest the gambling ring.

Chiang Mai Mail reporters
Police announced the arrest of a gang of South Koreans who ran an online gambling ring out of their rented home in Palm Spring Country Home in Chiang Mai after the police received information from the Korean Consulate in Thailand that South Korean criminal gangs were operating online gambling rings out of Chiang Mai.
The Department of Special Investigation (DSI) worked with CAT Telecom to track down the gang. Police arrested 5 men; Jang Hyungkyu, Lee Panho, Jung Kwanghoon, Han Sunggyu and Seo Minsung on suspicion of online gambling, as well as with an arrest warrant from the South Korean police.
Pol. Col. Songsak Raksaksakul, Commander of Foreign Affairs and International Crime Office of the DSI said after they arrested the gang they found 5 computers, mobile phones, an ATM card from a Korean bank and many electronic devices. The gang used Thailand as a base to service customers and saw a daily turnover of 700,000 baht. Police believe they may have taken many hundred million baht. The gang members were arrested for providing gambling without permission and as foreigners working without permission.
DSI officer said that addition to checking the house police also have to check two other locations. The police will gather all evidence and coordinate with South Korea to prosecute.


Black money con lures gullible buyers

Cameroon man arrested on 7 year old warrant

Evariste Segnou of Cameroon was arrested by police on a warrant from 2006 for fraud.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Region 5 Police announced the arrest of a Cameroonian man, Evariste Segnou, age 36, on suspicion of fraud on November 22, 2013. Mr. Segnou was arrested based on a warrant issued by the Chiang Mai District Court in March, 2006 for fraud allegedly committed in 2006.
On February 27 and 28, 2006 Mae Ping Police received a report from a victim who said he had been defrauded by a man from Cameroon to purchase chemicals that would “clean” counterfeit U.S. dollar bills or so called “black money”. The victim transferred money to buy the cleaner but the suspect disappeared with the money. Police arrested him at Suvarnabhumi Airport checkpoint and returned him to Chiang Mai for prosecution.
In a similar case Frank T. Williams of Liberia was arrested after victims reported to the police that they had been tricked into purchasing chemicals to clean “black money”. Police set up a sting operation and made an appointment with Mr. Williams to purchase the cleaner for 15,000 baht. The suspect went to what he thought was the victim’s home to demonstrate how to use the cleaner and was arrested by police.
Pol. Maj. Gen. Prachuab Wongsuk warned that this con was common in the North and that many victims had been deceived in the same way. Another con was for the person to pretend to be an English person on social networks and befriend people. He would then “purchase” a gift to send to the victim but ask the victim for airport transfer fees and other taxes and ask the victim to transfer the money to his account. Police warned people to beware this kind of fraud on online from foreign criminals.


Late night fried chicken craving leads to mayhem

Owner of Midnight Chicken Tee Saeung told police he had to shoot the customer after the man went on a rampage when he arrived too early to order fried chicken.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Late night munchies took a dangerous turn on Thursday, November 21, 2013 when a customer who arrived before opening time went on a destructive rampage after being denied his favorite fried chicken.
Midnight Fried Chicken is famed for its late night service, opening at midnight. However, Teerapong Hiranyosspol, age 41 of Bangkok, could not wait the half an hour before opening time. When he was refused his favorite fried chicken and sticky rice at 11:30 p.m. flew into a rage and began to destroy the restaurant. The owner, Tee Saeung, age 65, shot the customer as he rampaged through the restaurant.
Police and rescue personnel were called to the famed chicken restaurant at 12:15 a.m. on Friday, November 22, where they found Teerapong shot in the stomach and food and plates scattered widely on the floor.
The owner surrendered himself to the police with his gun and told police that the man had set to destroy his restaurant after being refused service.
Midnight Chicken is located on Kamphaeng Din Road and is famous for selling fried chicken and sticky rice, but only after midnight!


Army destroys opium poppy plantations in Om Koi

Opium production expected to rise no more than 10%

Army Region 5 soldiers flew to remote Om Koi sub district Na Kian to destroy opium poppy fields.

Nopniwat Krailerg
Pha Muang Task Force troops led by Lt. Gen. Niwatchai Thanomtham, Advisor Commander of the 3rd Army destroyed fields under opium poppy cultivation in Na Kian sub-district in Om Koi in Chiang Mai. The troops flew into the remote area by helicopter on November 22, 2013 to destroy the crops.
Last year, the 3rd Army destroyed 1,600 acres under opium cultivation. This year they found 305 plots in 2 provinces and 5 districts, most in Om Koi district. They believe the area will see an increase in opium cultivation because of the climatic conditions are ideal, the area has the cool temperatures and correct level of humidity for growing opium poppies.
According to information from the Narcotic Crops Survey and Monitoring Institute opium cultivation is likely to increase no more than 10%. A division of the National Command Centre for Drugs Elimination in Chiang Mai will set up supervisory board to coordinate with all agencies involved at 7th Battalion of Artillery in Mae Rim district. The Narcotic Crops Survey and Monitoring Institute will survey the area and delivery information to the division to destroy opium poppy crops.


SAO officer arrested in Pai for trafficking

Five men arrested smuggling drugs from Mae Sai

Six men, three from Tak and 3 from Uttaradit, were arrested trafficking 94,000 yaba tablets in Phrae.

Police Region 5 arrested a Sub-District Administration Officer from Pai after receiving a tip-off that drug traffickers belonging to Lt. Col. Yi Sae’s gang were smuggling drugs from the border in Pai, Mae Hong Son through Samoeng District in Chiang Mai. Police intercepted three men, including SAO officer Singkhum Saksrisereekul with 2,000 methamphetamine tablets hidden in a pickup truck. The suspect confessed that he had joined the trafficking gang to smuggle drugs and that he had done so twice already.
Three men from Tak were arrested on November 18 in Phrae with 94,000 methamphetamine tablets after police received a report that traffickers would be smuggling drugs from Mae Sai in Chiang Rai to Phrae via 4 motorcycles. Police intercepted the four motorcycles but one driver managed to escape. The 3 men confessed that they had been paid 100,000 baht to smuggle drugs to Phitsanulok. The police caught three men from Uttaradit on November 19 with information from the first arrest.
In another case, police seized the property of Weerakorn Sakulkitnanukul. He was implicated in the case of Supadech Buncharoen and 3 Taiwanese men arrested with 233.8kg of heroin at a hotel in Bangkok. The suspects implicated Weerakorn Sakulkitnanukul age 34 of Chiang Rai, as one of the gang. Although he is still at large, police confiscated his property including a house in Doi Saket, 3 pieces of property in Wiang Pa Po, 2 cars, a motorcycle, gold, 30,000 baht in cash and other properties totaling 10 million baht in value.
On November 22, 2013, Provincial Police Region 5, Pol. Maj. Gen. Prachuab Wongsuk announced the arrest of Burmese drug trafficker Mr. Saiawl Sein Ta age 23 with 10,380 amphetamine pills. Police were able to find the man after investigating retail drug sales in the San Sai area, they learned that the trafficker would be delivering drugs to the area in the evening of November 21. They arrested him at the roadside in Baan Maejo in San Sai district, while he was riding a Honda motorcycle; he was arrested carrying 10,000 methamphetamine pills. Police then went to his house in Tha Sala sub district, Muang district in Chiang Mai and found 380 amphetamine pills. The suspect confessed that he had been trafficking drugs for a long time.


 
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

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