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A combined force of customs officials, police and soldiers seized more than 10 million baht worth of smuggled alcoholic drinks, and cigarettes in raids at four places in Hat Yai yesterday.
The raid followed growing concern by authorities that more cigarettes and alcoholic drinks will be smuggled into the country from across the border to exploit the new excise tax law which sees higher prices of the two goods.
The combined force swooped on four places in Hat Yai and Bang Klam districts of Songkhla where authorities received information that huge stocks of smuggled goods were stored there.
They were said to be major distributors in the South.
It was the largest haul of smuggled cigarettes and alcoholic drinks since the new excise tax rates came into force on Sept 16.
The four places are two warehouses in Tha Chang of Bang Klam, and two stores at Talad Mai market in downtown Hat Yai.
Apart from the smuggled cigarettes and alcoholic drinks, a 10-wheel truck loaded with contraband cigarettes were also seized.
The prices of most cigarettes and alcoholic drinks rose after the new excise tax rates came into force last Saturday.
Customs official said that these cigarettes and liquors were smuggled from Langkawi island, Malaysia by boat to Satun province or through Sadao District in Songkhla.