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Police officers transferred as mega-raid uncovers hundreds of underage drinkers

PHOTO: Thai Rath

Five police officers have been transferred following a huge raid on a nightclub in central Thailand that was serving nearly 500 underage drinkers. The operation, codenamed Rangsit Mun Rai (“Rangsit is Wild”), took place at the Heaven Rangsit nightclub in the central province of Pathum Thani, in the early hours of Sunday morning, January 7.

The Bangkok Post reports that a total of 489 minors were found at the venue, which was also found to be operating without the necessary licences and safety inspections.

Yesterday, in the usual game of “police musical chairs” that follows such incidents, 5 senior police officers from Klong Luang Police Station were transferred to inactive posts at Pathum Thani Provincial Police Headquarters.

The officers are accused of failing to control a renowned nightclub, according to Yuthana Jonkhun, commander of Pathum Thani Provincial Police. They will work at the provincial headquarters for 15 days once the police investigation is complete.

In addition, the district chief of Klong Luang, Noppadol Pholsue, was transferred to the district of Phachi, in neighbouring Ayutthaya. Meanwhile, the current chief of Pachi district, Apisara Ket-In, has taken Noppadol’s old role.

Also transferred was the Klong Luang deputy district chief, who has been moved to the Pathum Thani provincial office.

Heaven Rangsit was raided as a result of numerous complaints from the public, according to the Bangkok Post. Around 50 officials from the Interior Ministry arrived at the property to find over 1,000 customers on site. It’s understood that some staff members tried to help underage patrons to leave via back exit. However, officers turned on all the lights and blocked all exits.

In total, 489 minors were discovered, the youngest of whom was 16. The club has been temporarily closed for 2 weeks while the owners are questioned, and is expected to be hit with a 5-year closure, according to Pathum Thani governor, Passakorn Bunyaluck.

The governor adds that he has already held talks with 234 nightclubs in the province about the penalties for admitting and serving underage drinkers.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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