In Summary
  • The Golden Triangle is a notorious lawless border zone that straddles Laos, Myanmar and Thailand.
  • This is the 15th death of an alleged smuggler in just over a month in northern Thailand as authorities intensify a crackdown.

BANGKOK,

Thai police shot dead a smuggler and seized 15 million meth pills at a checkpoint in Thailand's portion of the "Golden Triangle", officials said Friday, the latest death in an intensifying drug crackdown.

Millions of dollars worth of methamphetamine pour into Thailand each week from neighbouring Myanmar, where drug lords are flooding the market with narcotics.

NOTORIOUS

The Golden Triangle is a notorious lawless border zone that straddles Laos, Myanmar and Thailand.

Experts say drug lords in the zone, mainly in neighbouring Myanmar's self-administered Wa state, have been churning out more drugs than ever in a trade worth tens of billions of dollars annually.

Thai drug police and military have ramped up operations in the northern gateway to Myanmar, killing and arresting smugglers who are often from ethnic hill tribes who live across the lawless area.

The latest shootout happened as three trucks were stopped late Thursday night in Chiang Rai province.

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