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Cablegate: Blue Lantern Level 3: Pre-License End-Use Check On

VZCZCXYZ0001
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHBK #3592/01 3440858
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 090858Z DEC 08
FM AMEMBASSY BANGKOK
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 5331
INFO RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHINGTON DC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC

UNCLAS BANGKOK 003592

SIPDIS

PM/DTTC FOR BLUE LANTERN COORDINATOR

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETTC KOMC TH
SUBJECT: BLUE LANTERN LEVEL 3: PRE-LICENSE END-USE CHECK ON
APPLICATION 050127892

REF: STATE 118451

1. (U) According to the Thai Ministry of Commerce, Kangwan
Firearms, Limited Partnership, was listed. The company was
originally named Saha Phonchai Firearms Ltd., Part., and was
renamed Kangwan on January 16, 1979.

Registration No. 0203515000052
Registered Date: January 21, 1972
Status: Limited Partnership
Capital Registration: 1,500,000 baht
Executives: Suni Pankaew with an investment of 500,000 baht,
Benjamat Sitthiphongworakun with an investment of 500,000
baht, and Kritsani Sitthiphongworakun with an investment of
500,000 baht.
Managing-Partner: Suni Pankaew, without limitation of
authority
Company Location: 449/18, Mu 12, Thep Prasit Rd., Tambon Nong
Prue, Amphoe Bang Lamung, Chonburi.
The company has submitted annual financial reports for
1999-2007.
Purpose of Company: Retail sale of guns, ammunition, and
other equipment.

2. (U) The company was not listed in the phone directory. The
reftel phone number was a confidential number and the phone
directory could not provide more information. POL FSN called
the number and was transferred to a representative of
Kangwan. The site visit revealed that the phone numbers for
the office of the company in Chonburi Province were
038-300-938 and 081-209-1795. The phone directory confirmed
that 038-300-938 was registered to Kangwan Firearms Ltd. Part.

3. (U) POL FSN visited the Kangwan facility November 18. The
shop was located in Pattaya, Chonburi Province on the ground
floor of a compound named Pattaya Housing Estate Project 2-3,
which was a group of high-rise condominiums on a busy street
of Pattaya. The reftel address was confirmed and the shop
was open for business. POL FSN met Phansak Sakda, shop
manager, as well as two of Kangwan's marketing and
contracting personnel named Attar-Singh Ananthawan and his
son, Arkhom. Phansak appeared to run the shop alone as no
other staff were observed. Phansak said he has worked at
this shop since it moved to the current location in 2000.
The shop is a two-story concrete shop house with iron-barred
windows and iron gates. It had a secured storage room,
measuring approximately 1 meter by 2 meters by 1.20 meters,
located under the stairway leading to the second floor of the
shop. The walls and ceiling of the storage room were
concrete. The room had an iron door secured by a
conventional key lock. There was no sprinkler system, CCTV,
or shop guard. Phansak said he lives on the second floor of
the shop.

4. (U) There were no guns or ammunition for sale at the shop,
just gun accessories. Phansak said that a customer who
wanted to purchase a gun would place an order at the shop in
advance. The shop has a regular annual gun quota of fifty
rifles and thirty pistols but they are mostly sold in Bangkok
as the market was larger there. No customers entered the
shop during the one hour meeting. Attar-Singh said the
thirty-three pistols in reftel would be imported by Kangwan
and sold to cadets of the police cadet academy in Nakhon
Pathom Province. Each cadet was able to purchase a gun with
their own money, and the gun would be used for police duties.
The gun would be personal property of the cadet. The reason
for this program was that Royal Thai Police was unable to
provide guns for all police personnel. The reftel guns would
not be transported to the shop in Pattaya. Kangwan staff,
shipping agents, and representatives of the police cadet
academy would go to Suvarnabhumi Airport to take possession
of the guns from customs officials after the guns arrived in
Thailand. The guns would then be transported directly to the
police cadet academy in Nakhon Pathom for registration and
distribution.

5. (U) Phansak presented gun shop permit number 427/2551 and
gun sale permit number 1/2551, both issued June 7, 2008, and
to expire June 6, 2009, annually renewable, by Bang Lamung
District Office, Chonburi. Attar-Singh presented the DSP-83
and a purchase order numbered 436/5 1, not 426/51 as stated
reftel. All other details concurred with reftel. He also
brought the original gun import certifications numbered
127/2551 - 155/2551, 168/2551, and 194/2551 - 196/2551
totaling thirty-three pieces. All details concurred with
reftel other than reftel runs to only 195/2551. Attar-Singh
stated that Kangwan had secured a contract to purchase
seventy-six pistols for police cadets from the academy out of

a total of 201 cadets. Among the seventy-six orders,
thirty-three had been ordered from RSR Group Inc.,
thirty-seven were ordered from Kimber, and six were ordered
from STI.

6. (U) POL FSN November 18 met with the manager of the
Pattaya Housing Estate Project 2-3. The manager said Kangwan
had purchased the shop-house in October, 2001. Suni Pankaew
had purchased the building. Kangwan paid utility expenses to
the Project's office. Not irregularities were noted by the
office. However, the shop was usually open only
intermittently, but had been open quite often as of late.

7. (U) POL FSN November 18 met the Deputy District Chief of
the Gun Section of Bang Lamung District Office, Chonburi
Province. He confirmed the existence and registration of
Kangwan and certified the gun shop permit and the gun sale
permit. He explained that since demand for guns in Bangkok
and southern Thailand was greater higher than in Pattaya, the
shop rarely sells its full quota of guns to local customers.
Therefore, it contracted with gun shops at locations in those
areas to sell the remainder of its quota. The shop in
Pattaya mostly sold gun accessories. The Gun Section did
have any derogatory information on Kangwan.

8. (U) POL FSN November 28 met Pol. Lt. Col. Nathi
Chaiyanuphong, Inspector of Sub-Division 1, Police Cadet
Division at the police cadet academy in Nakhon Pathom
Province. Nathi confirmed the intended purchase of guns as
stated reftel and the names of the police cadets who had
ordered the guns. Nathi also confirmed Kangwan's role in the
purchase process.

9. (U) POL FSN November 28 met the Chief of the Gun Section
at Sam Phran District Office in Nakhon Pathom Province. The
Chief confirmed the gun purchase and related permits and
Kangwan's status in the sale.

10.(U) POL FSN November 28 visited Kangwan's Bangkok office
and met a member of the accounting staff. The staff
confirmed that the Bangkok office provides administrative
support to Kangwan's sales office in Pattaya. The staff said
that there is also an office located in northern Bangkok that
contacts and coordinates with Bangkok-based clients or
government offices.
JOHN

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
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