13 Chinese sailors on the Mekong River in the northern Thai province of Chiang Rai were murdered in 2011.
Convicted of their murders, and all appeals rejected, 4 men were executed by lethal injection. Chinese authorities identified one of the men as a Myanmar drug lord named Naw Kham, with the other three, believed to be members of his gang, were named as Hsang Kham from Thailand, Yi Lai, referred to as “stateless,” and Zha Xika, a Laotian, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
Two others were sentenced to 8 years in prison.
Xinhua referred to Kham’s nickname as “the Godfather,” saying that his was “the largest armed drug trafficking gang on the Mekong River.”
Thai authorities discovered the gruesome scene in October 2011. They boarded two cargo ships that had come under gunfire. On board they found 12 bodies, some with their hands tied behind them, one missing sailor, and 1,000,000 amphetamines.
Xinhua reported that the gang was arrested in a joint operation by police from China, Laos, Myanmar and Thailand. The gang was in collusion with Thai soldiers who fired on the two ships.
Kham is also accused of organizing the kidnapping of Chinese sailors and cargo ships for ransom in April, 2011.
In a television interview from his jail cell, Kham seemed to express some regret. “The Golden Triangle area is a place of evil,” he said, referring to one of Southeast Asia’s main drug-producing areas that overlaps several countries in the region. “It turns good people bad.
“People come here doing business, but they couldn’t resist the temptation of drugs, then they become drug dealers too.”
China executes more people than any other country in the world. They reveal that they use it as a deterrent, hoping the fear of losing one’s life will lower violent crime in the country. Sentencing is broadcast on live television.
Columnist-The Guardian Express