A truckload of methamphetamine tablets, commonly known by the Thai word ya-ba, was seized near the Shan State border town of Tachilek on Friday.
Local police told DVB that about 59 kilograms of the drug, valued at about 1.5 billion kyat (US$1.5 million) were hidden underneath the seat of an Isuzu pickup truck en route to Wanpong village in the Golden Triangle, a mountainous area known for extensive drug production and trafficking.
Police Lance-Corp Toe Myint Aung, a member of Tachilek’s Anti-Narcotics Task Force, said that a combined unit of police, army and paramilitary personnel intercepted the truck at a checkpoint near Pakhok village following an anonymous tip. The vehicle’s 19-year-old driver has been charged under Burma’s Narcotics Law.
“The bags of ya-ba were wrapped in paper and hidden in a compartment underneath the passenger seat. There were 94 bags each containing 6,000 pills, six bags with 4,000 each and one bag with 2,000,” said Toe Myint Aung.
The driver admitted that drug manufacturers promised him 50,000 Thai baht (US$1,500) to deliver the load from Weilelang village, near Tachilek district, to Wanpong.
Police said there have been at least ten other drug busts in the area this year, with Friday’s being the largest yet. On 14 June, the Anti-Narcotic Task Force seized a batch of raw opium valued at 1.5 million kyat at a checkpoint near Tachilek.