New police chief brings Issan drug-fighting experience to Pattaya

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A police superintendent who most recently fought drug traffickers on the Laos border has taken over as Pattaya’s new chief.

Col. Dhamnoon Munkong, who headed the Ponsawan Police Station in Nakhon Phanom, which shares a border with Khammouan, Laos, addressed Pattaya police officers and staff upon taking office April 5. Little known outside Issan, Dhamnoon built a reputation for fighting drugs, particularly marijuana traffickers.

New police chief, Col. Dhamnoon Munkong. New police chief, Col. Dhamnoon Munkong.

Dhamnoon, 52, graduated from the Armed Forces Academy’s Preparatory School and holds a bachelor’s degree in law from Ramkhamhaeng University and masters’ degrees in criminal justice from Mahidol University and political science from Kasetsart University. Upon graduating the police academy, he took his first posting in Pichit in 1984.

During his career, Dhamnoon has been credited with helping close several high profile cases involving petroleum smugglers, finance, copyright violations and drugs.

“Now that I am serving in Pattaya, I would like to implement my strategy for dealing with drugs by clearing out major and minor dealers and eradicate the distribution system,” he said. “As for robbery, I have ordered my men to enforce strict rules in arresting thieves, many of whom are also in the drug-dealing business.”

Part of that strategy would be to have officers stop any motorbike without license plates as most are stolen and being used for nefarious purposes, Dhamnoon said.