Officials from the Thai Excise Department arrested a prime suspect and seized smuggled cigarettes worth about 12 million baht in Banglamung today.
The Chonburi Excise Department, led by Mr. Worawat Pinyo, seized the smuggled various brands of Thai and foreign cigarettes at a total of 25,500 packages earlier this week. Excise officials estimated the retail value of the seized items at about 12 million baht while the loss of tax revenue on the products is about a million baht.
The prime suspect, named Pao Wongwean, age not given, and the cigarettes seized were found at a house in the Lake Mappachan housing estate in Nongprue. The arrest came after officials received a tip-off that cigarettes were being smuggled through the Thai – Cambodian border in Sa Kaeo.
Excise officials and related local Chonburi law enforcement agencies investigated after they found through the tip-off from a concerned citizen that these cigarettes were being kept at a house in the Pattaya area before transporting.
Mr. Wongwean faces legal charges under the Customs & Excise Act regarding illegal possession of unpaid tax goods.