Kitties are now being used to launder Thailand’s dirty drug money

Six foreign cats were found abandoned today at the house of an accused drug ring leader’s wife in Rayong’s Klaeng district. Photo: Thai PBS
Six foreign cats were found abandoned today at the house of an accused drug ring leader’s wife in Rayong’s Klaeng district. Photo: Thai PBS

Six kitties imported from abroad are now evidence in a money laundering case against a drug kingpin in Rayong province.

The cats were recovered today from cages during a raid on a home belonging to the wife of a suspected drug syndicate leader already in custody. The home had been abandoned prior to the raid, but the six, well-bred felines – including Bengals and Scottish Folds – were left behind, according to Lt. Gen. Chinphat Sarasin.

He said the cats, which can fetch prices in the tens of thousands of baht are one way the drug traffickers launder their money. The cats looked pretty well fed for having been abandoned two months by Achara Namnin, who is on the run while her husband Sorakrit Sonsiri sits behind bars. 

They will be looked after by local livestock officials, and once their use as evidence is expired, could be resold onto the market by the Narcotics Control Board Office.

So those looking for some fancy cats at below-market rates should keep an eye on the board’s Chonburi province offices.

Sorakrit and six members of the drug operation were taken into custody in January, and THB120 million worth of property confiscated. In addition to the high-value pussy cats, that also included luxury cars and motorbikes, gold and other properties, in addition to a goodly amount of ketamine, speed and ecstasy. Tatthep Arun, 26, was arrested as a suspected member today along with an additional THB35 million worth of property.

The network is suspected of being part of a sprawling transborder operation. Lt. Gen. Chinphat said they had accrued massive wealth in a short amount of time by both trafficking drugs and laundering the money.

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