5,600 racers caught in 11 days

 5,600 racers caught in 11 days
Dozens of motorcycles seized from illegal street racers are on display at the Provincial Police Region 1 in Chatuchak district of Bangkok on Thursday. (Photo: Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

Police arrested more than 5,600 street racers and seized over 17,700 bikes in 11 days after the night curfew was lifted.

The police ramped up efforts to crack down on illegal street racers, known locally as Vanz boys, from June 20 to 30. Many of them returned to the streets after the Covid-related curfew was lifted on June 14.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha had warned against gatherings and street racing and said that regardless of the curfew police should take action against the racers.

Assistant national police chief Pol Lt Gen Damrongsak Kittiprapas said on Thursday that Bangkok police and the Provincial Police Region 1 which covered the lower central plains arrested 109 such racers, seized 11,743 motorcycles and prosecuted 3,088 shops for illegally modifying motorcycle parts.

Most modifications were done on motorcycles’ exhaust pipes which gave loud noise, the derivation of the locally coined word, Vanz.

Police also put 668 parents of the illegal racers on probation, Pol Lt Gen Damrongsak said.

During the suppression, complaints on illegal street races dropped from over 600 to less than 300 a month, he said.

Meanwhile, the Provincial Police Region 8 covering the lower South announced it seized 237 motorcycles and 311 illegally modified exhaust pipes and put 175 young motorcyclists and 28 parents on probation.

Police in the northeastern province of Ubon Ratchathani arrested 85 young motorcyclists and seized 317 motorcycles and about 300 modified exhaust pipes.

The Provincial Police Region 6 which supervises a part of the North arrested six racers, put 1,921 motorcyclists and 212 parents on probation and seized 1,306 motorcycles.

Police in the northeastern province of Nakhon Ratchasima arrested 476 motorcyclists and seized 665 bikes and 204 substandard exhaust pipes.

The Provincial Police Region 7 which also covers lower south provinces put 5,009 motorcyclists on probation and seized 4,632 bikes and 357 substandard exhaust pipes.

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