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PHUKET: Raids on nightlife venues in Phuket continued last night, with police seizing 40 hookahs used for smoking shisha and catching eight underage drinkers.

“We received a tip-off about a specific venue serving alcohol to minors, as well as providing shisha, a flavored tobacco product that is illegal to import into Thailand,” explained Aroon Sing-in of the Phuket Provincial Office, who led the raid.

Mr Aroon showed up in force with more than 30 officers from various departments in tow.

“There were a lot of customers, so we ordered everyone to put their ID cards on their table. Eight girls were underage, while three others did not have ID cards and looked underage,” Mr Aroon said.

“After questioning the underage clients, we let them go. However, things will not be so easy for the manager of the bar, which is located on the road behind Phuket Rajabhat University in Samkong.”

Thanongsak Chanmanee, the manager of Sabaijai, was charged with the possession of untaxed shisha and selling alcohol to minors. The shisha charge carries a penalty of up to five years imprisonment, a fine of up to 500,000 baht or both. For selling alcohol to minors, Mr Thanongsak faces up to one year imprisonment, a fine of up to 20,000 baht or both.

On Monday night, raids on popular nightlife venues found one Phuket Town bar illegally operating as a nightclub (story here).

— Kritsada Mueanhawong