PHILIPPINE Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) operatives seized almost P5 million (about US $108,695) worth of suspected methamphetamine hydrochloride otherwise known as shabu from a provincial jail guard and four other persons following a buy bust operation last week in Palo, Leyte.
PDEA Director General Undersecretary Arturo G. Cacdac, Jr. said two plastic sachet containing 623 grams of suspected shabu with an estimated street value of P4,984,000 were seized from Jail Guard Renato Saratan, 44; Caesar Quijano, 54; Evelyn Suarez, 35; Ronilo Ruiz, 32; and Kevin Mark Kapas, 20, all residents of Leyte province in Eastern Visayas. He added that Saratan is currently assigned at the Leyte Sub-Provincial Jail.
PDEA records showed that on June 9, shortly after dawn, the suspects sold the suspected shabu to a PDEA poseur buyer inside a hotel along Diversion Road, Pawing, Palo, Leyte. After the sale, the suspects were immediately arrested.
Cacdac said charges of violation of Republic Act 9165 (Dangerous Drugs Act) were already filed against the suspect before the office of the provincial prosecutors office.
Meanwhile, two suspected members of local drug syndicates operating in Baguio City in Northern Luzon were arrested by a combined PDEA and police elements during separate entrapment operations last week in the country’s summer capital.
The suspects were identified as Abdul Raffy Zenab Ampaso and Arnold Gabriel Cacho, both residents of Baguio City.
Ampaso was arrested during a buy bust operation. One sachet of suspected shabu with an estimated worth P10,000 (about US $217) and a mobile phone were seized from him.
Cacho, on the other hand, was apprehended in his rented condominium unit along Legarda Road, Upper Quezon Hill, Baguio City after he reportedly sold 4.2 grams of suspected shabu worth P8,000 (about US $173) to an undercover agent.
Both Ampaso and Cacho, who is reportedly a member of the Sadeek Drug Syndicate, were charged for violation of Section 5 (Sale of Dangerous Drugs), Article II of Republic Act 9165 before the Baguio City Prosecutors Office.
All of these arrests and seizures of suspected illegal drugs were part of the PDEA’s intensified campaign against drug syndicates and the spread of narcotics in the country.