[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index
Case against Wei suffers big setbac
- Subject: Case against Wei suffers big setbac
- From: suriya@xxxxxxxxxxxx
- Date: Mon, 28 Jun 1999 19:15:00
Subject: Case against Wei suffers big setback
June 28, 1999
Case against Wei suffers big setback
Drug warlord may get off the hook
In another setback to US and Thai efforts to bring drug kingpins in the Golden
Triangle to justice, Wei Hsueh-kang of the United Wa State Army who was
indicted in New York in 1993, may still get off the hook following the recent
death of a key witness and the disappearance of another, informed sources
Sources in New York and Bangkok told Bangkok Post the key witness in Wei's
had died of natural causes and the other, a convicted drug trafficker who
agreed to testify against Wei in court in exchange for a lesser sentence, had
completed his jail term and there was no reason for him to cooperate.
The witness, whose identity has been kept secret, has been released and is
believed to have left the US. His whereabouts are unknown.
The evidence against Wei is not strong enough to win the case in court,
This turn of events is becoming a major embarrassment for the US, which last
year offered a US$2 million (72 million baht) reward for Wei's capture. With
insufficient evidence to prosecute him, the indictment for conspiracy and drug
trafficking would eventually have to be dropped.
Just last week, news reports from San Francisco where another suspected drug
kingpin-Thanong Siripreechapong, a former MP of the Chart Thai Party-is being
tried, indicate he may go free after a prosecutor tried to temporarily conceal
a kickback accepted by a US agent in order to secure a conviction.
Assistant US Attorney John Lyons twice called the prosecutor handling the
kickback case to delay action against Customs agent Frank Gervacio, who
accepted a $4,000 gift from a key informant in the Thanong case, until
testified in order to keep the agent's credibility intact, according to AFP.
Both attempts failed. US District Court Judge Vaughn Walker is considering a
proposal to dismiss most of the charges against Thanong, whose lawyer outlined
a proposed deal in a letter to the San Francisco federal court two weeks ago
and expects the matter to be resolved tomorrow.
Another source said the State Department is unlikely to cancel the reward for
Wei under its Counter-Narcotics Rewards Programme since he remains the biggest
and most powerful drug kingpin in the Golden Triangle, a position he has held
since 1996, after the UWSA militarily defeated Khun Sa of the Mong Tai Army.
His 47th Brigade of the UWSA based in Ban Hong, opposite Ban Therdthai in Mae
Fah Luang district of Chiang Rai, floods the Thai market with millions of
methamphetamine tablets each month. It also supplies the international drug
market with heroin. Its efforts to locally produce the synthetic drug ecstasy,
has proved unsuccessful.
Database 10 yrs
© Copyright The Post Publishing Public Co., Ltd. 1999
Last Modified: Mon, Jun 28, 1999
For comments and letters to the editor see : notes
Comments to: Webmaster
Advertisng enquiries to Internet Marketing