Thai woman arrested in Vietnam with nearly 2kgs of cocaine

By Dinh Muoi, Thanh Nien News

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The cocaine, allegedly smuggled into Vietnam by a Thai woman whose name was only revealed as S.A (not pictured here), seized by Tan Son Nhat airport custom officials on Sunday. Photo credit: Tan Son Nhat Customs Agency The cocaine, allegedly smuggled into Vietnam by a Thai woman whose name was only revealed as S.A (not pictured here), seized by Tan Son Nhat airport custom officials on Sunday. Photo credit: Tan Son Nhat Customs Agency

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Tan Son Nhat airport's customs officers on Sunday arrested a Thai woman for allegedly smuggling 1.73 kilograms of cocaine into Vietnam.

The Thai woman, whose name was only revealed as S.A., allegedly hided the cocaine, worth around VND11 billion (US$519,000), in a holder of incense sticks and packed it in her checked-in suitcase. 

During interrogation, she admitted to sneaking the cocaine through four countries before jetting in Vietnam, customs officials said, without revealing the names of those countries.

Further investigations are underway. 

Vietnam has some of the world's toughest drug laws. Those convicted of smuggling more than 600 grams of heroin or more than 2.5 kilograms of methamphetamine face the death penalty.

 

The production or sale of 100 grams of heroin or 300 grams of other illegal narcotics is also punishable by death.

 
Last April, a court of appeals upheld the death sentence to a Thai woman, 32-year-old Chaimongkol Suracha, for smuggling 1.98 kilograms of cocaine from Brazil to Vietnam two years ago.
 
Death penalty statistics are not released in Vietnam, but the punishment is handed down most frequently to those convicted of murder or drug-trafficking.

Vietnam officially switched from the firing squad to lethal injection in November 2011. But it was not until last August that the country executed its first prisoner with the new method due to the unavailability of drugs used for lethal injections.

There are currently around 500 people on the death row in Vietnam.
 

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