On February 8th, 2024, Mr. Panthong Loikunnan, the spokesperson for the Thai Customs Department, publicly revealed a program for the strict prevention and suppression of the smuggling of cigarettes and e-cigarettes to Thailand according to the Thai government’s policy to maintain strict marketing mechanisms and for good health.
Customs officials worked proactively to investigate and crack down on illegal cigarettes and e-cigarette smugglers to Thailand, causing the problem of falling prices of tobacco. Furthermore, the operation could protect the rights of legal cigarette sellers in Thailand.
From October 1st, 2023 to January 31st, 2024, the Customs Department was able to arrest 632 cigarette smugglers and confiscated properties in dispute of more than 47.5 million baht, and were able to arrest 62 e-cigarette smugglers and confiscated properties in dispute of more than 15.5 million baht, according to the spokesperson for the Customs Department.
As a result, there were 694 individuals apprehended and properties in dispute worth more than 63.13 million baht.
The wrongdoers committed offenses according to Section 242 and Section 246 in conjunction with Section 166 and Section 167 of the Customs Act 2017 and other related laws, stated the spokesperson for the Customs Department.