Pattaya’s police chief and his top lieutenants were suspended for a month after 155 people tested positive for drugs in two late-night pub raids.
Superintendent Pol. Col. Prawit Chosang, deputy chief Pol. Lt. Col. Manot Wangsusuk, inspectors Pol. Lt. Col. Saranpong Maithongkulthorn and Maj. Palakorn Trachunit; and another unnamed officer were transferred to the Chonburi provincial police headquarters pending an investigation into how the 90’s Pub and Brazil Pattaya club were allowed to operate until dawn selling alcohol after hours and admitting underage patrons.
A joint task force of soldiers, officers from the Narcotics Control Board and officials from the Department of Provincial Administration and Department of Juvenile Observation and Protection stormed the two pubs after 4 a.m. Saturday following a long-running investigation that saw DPA officials pose as customers to scope out all the illicit behavior tolerated by Pattaya police.
More than 300 people were in the Brazil Pattaya pub on South Road when officers swooped in with a few managing to escape. Once the dust cleared, soldiers had scooped up one man carrying a loaded 9 mm. handgun, and 62 packets of ketamine, ecstasy and crystal methamphetamine.
Urine tests determined 142 people there were high while 58 were cited for not having identification cards and four youths under age 20 were found.
Manager Taksin Pusri was arrested and charged with operating outside legal hours, selling alcohol outside hours and selling booze to underage youths.
The subsequent raid of the 90’s Pub found 13 people failing drug tests and numerous illegal shisha pots. The unidentified manager was arrested and charged with the same offenses as Taksin, plus selling illegal tobacco.
Royal Thai Police spokesman Pol. Col. Kritsana Pattanacharoen said Pattaya’s police chief and top officers were suspended as per department policy when another organization has to come into a jurisdiction to do what police didn’t do.
Chonburi police chief Pol. Maj. Gen. Nanatchart Suppamongkol formed an investigative committee to determine how both pubs were allowed to operate unfettered for so long.