Thailand Security Threats

Data and information about security threats from Thailand’s black market. Intelligence data and security threat information collected from news articles and public data sources.

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A man from Pakistan was arrested in Indonesia while he was attempting to smuggling packs of heroin to Thailand. When arrested at the airport, the man had 767 capsules in his stomach that contained 966 grams of heroin.

(How much does heroin cost?)

According to criminal justice officials, the man reportedly stated that he was paid $15,000 to swallow the capsules and transport it from Indonesia to Thailand.

(More earnings from illegal jobs.)

Source:  “Drug smuggling ‘controlled from Thailand’,” Jakarta Post, March 7, 2014.

The Wildlife Conservation Office in Thailand released its figures of the number of wildlife and animals that it seized from wildlife traffickers in 2013.

According to the department, about 10,700 live animals, 1,348 carcasses of dead animals, and 3,293 kilograms of various animals parts were seized from wildlife traffickers in Thailand in 2013.

642 people involved in the illegal wildlife trade was also arrested in 2013.

Criminal justice officials reported that Sunda pangolins, squirrels, elephants, tigers and gibbons were the most seized animals in Thailand in 2013.

(More prices of exotic animals for sale.)

Source:  Pongphon Samsamak, “Up to 10,000 smuggled animals seized in past year,” The Nation, March 4, 2014.

In Febraury 2014, Interpol and Europol reported on global raids conducted against producers and sellers of counterfeit foods.

In total, over 1,200 tonnes of counterfeit and substandard food and nearly 430,000 liters of counterfeit beverages were seized across 33 countries. 96 people were arrested by various criminal justice programs during the investigation.

Highlights of the campaign against counterfeit foods:

  • Across Europe, over 131,000 liters of fake oil and vinegar , 80,000 counterfeit biscuits and chocolate bars, 20 tonnes of fake spices and condiments, and 45 tonnes of substandard dairy products were seized by Europol.
  • In Italy, 60,000 bottles and labels of fake champagne was seized.
  • Police in Thailand found over 270 bottles of fake whiskey.
  • $17.2 Million worth of counterfeit foods and drinks were seized in Colombia.

Source:  “Global police swoop seizes millions in fake food, drink,” Channel NewsAsia, February 14, 2014.

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Data from the Australian Crime Commission shows that there are more people arrested for steroid use in Queensland than in any other state in Australia.

58 percent of all steroids arrests in Australia in 2011 to 2012 took place in Queensland. According to preliminary data collected from national criminal justice programs, Queensland will also have the most steroids arrests when the 2012-2013 report is released. In neighboring state New South Wales, 74 percent of young men who used illegal drugs used steroids.

Security officials state that many young men are traveling to Thailand in order to obtain steroids. The men stay in Thailand for 3 to 6 months to complete a cycle of steroids. In addition to Thailand, men purchase steroids on the black market from biker gangs (bikies) in Australia, or from dealers in local gyms.

Police stress that the men who are taking steroids are not taking them for any athletic competition, but rather to improve their image. Users have been found to combine the steroids with methamphetaminesto lose weight. These users then go to nightclubs in the Gold Coast in order to show off their new bodies. The steroids, which causes mood swings, combined with ice and alcohol has lead to reports of violence in Gold Coast. Police have reported that up to six officers were needed to restrain a man high on the combination who got out of control.

(Additional facts about meth users.)

Source:  Daniel Meers, “Cocktail of steroids, ice and alcohol breeding ‘super thugs’ behind street violence,” Courier Mail, January 25, 2014.

A survey conducted by the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce found that companies that pay kickbacks and bribes to state officials pay in the range of 25 to 35 percent of the project value. The survey was based upon 2,400 respondents.

In 2013, the value of corruption in Thailand was estimated to cost $8.6 Billion (240 to 330 Billion Thai Baht), or roughly 10 percent of the 2.4 Trillion Thai Baht that was spent on the country’s overall investment and procurement budget.

Based on the 35 percent kickback rate, Thailand’s GDP rate would be cut by 2.63 percent due to corruption.

(Additional types of corruption in the world.)

Source:  “Corruption ‘still plagues Thailand’ ,” Bangkok Post, January 17, 2014.

The Office of  the Narcotics Control Board in Thailand released its statistics on meth trafficking arrests in Thailand for 2013.

According to figures from criminal justice programs, there were 431,000 drug related arrests across Thailand in 2013. The number of arrests have been increasing each year, with 386,000 arrests in 2012 and 224,000 arrests in 2011.

Along with an increase in drug arrests, the number of methamphetamine pills seized by police has continued to increase. In 2011, police seized 55 million meth pills. In 2012, the number increased to 83 million and further increased to 120 million meth pills being seized in 2013.

The number of admissions to drug treatment programs in Thailand has increased since 2011, where 203,000 people entered drug rehab. In 2012, the number of patients increased to 560,000, and slightly dropped in 2013 to 485,000. (Additional facts about meth addiction here.)

Across the country, there are over 40,000 drug users who inject the drug with needles. Out of the injecting users, 22 percent are infected with HIV.

As of the end of 2013, the price to buy Yaba, or a meth pill on the streets of Thailand was $4.

(More meth prices worldwide.)

Source:  “Rethinking Thailand’s war on methamphetamines,” IRIn, January 13, 2014.

According to statistics collected by the International Organization for Migration (IOM), at least 2,360 migrants died while attempting to cross borders around the world in 2013.

For sea-based crossing by boats, the Caribbean, the Mediterranean island of Lampedusa, and the waters surrounding Indonesia and Thailand saw a number of deaths of migrants attempting to cross borders.

For land-based traveling, the border between Mexico and the United States and the desert between West Africa and Libya were also considered to be dangerous routes for migrants.

The value of the black market in human smuggling was estimated to be worth $35 Billion a year industry, according to the IOM. This figure is higher than the previously $20 Billion estimate made in 2009.

Source:  “It’s Time to Take Action and Save Lives of Migrants Caught in Crisis,” International Organization for Migration, Press Release, December 17, 2013.

According to the International Labor Organization, sex workers in the major cities of Thailand send an estimated $300 Million a year of their earnings back home to their families in rural areas. The amount of money that is sent back home to rural areas by the prostitutes is more money than any form of government development project.

The sex industry in Thailand is estimated to generate $6.4 Billion  a year and employs between 200,000 t0 300,000 women.

(Number of prostitutes worldwide.)

Source:  Religion News Service, “In Thailand, US evangelicals work to end prostitution,” Washington Post, January 6, 2014.

The Polaris Project, an non-governmental organization, estimates that there are up to 54,000 human trafficking victims that are bought and sold in Japan each year.

In an article with the Bangkok Post, the report highlighted cases where women from the Philippines, Thailand and South Korea were trafficked to Japan in order to work in the prostitution industry.

In addition to women from foreign countries, girls and women from Japan are trafficked within the country. The Polaris Project states that domestic violence victims, single mothers and other women facing financial struggles are targeted. It was previously reported that minors were having sex with men for $100.

(More prices of human trafficking victims.)

Source:  “Activists demand action against human trafficking in Japan,” Bangkok Post, December 25, 2013.

Surveillance by public health programs and criminal justice agencies indicate that 11 percent of all amphetamine and crystal meth users in China inject the drug.

In Cambodia, the rate of injection rate is 12 percent, and in Thailand the rate is 9 percent.

In Australia,where  3.4 percent of the population abuses amphetamine type stimulants, around 18 percent of the drug users inject the drugs.

Public health officials are concerned that the rising use of drug injections will lead to a rise in HIV infections.

(More methamphetamine facts.)

The Southeast Asia region has seen a rise in the trafficking and production of methamphetamine. The Australian National Council on Drugs reports that government security agencies believe that there are up to 12 large-scale meth manufacturing operations in the Golden Triangle area of Myanmar, Laos and Thailand.

Back in 1999, security forces identified 300 clandestine laboratories in Southeast Asia that was producing meth. 10 years later, the number of labs increased to nearly 700.

(How much does a gram of meth cost?)

Source:  Sue Dunlevy, “Crystal meth drug Laboratories in South East Asia double,” News.com.au, December 5, 2013.