3 Chinese nationals convicted for operating shabu lab-A A +A
Tuesday, August 5, 2014
THE Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) lauded Tuesday the decision of a court sentencing three Chinese nationals with life imprisonment for operating a clandestine shabu laboratory in Parañaque City.
PDEA Director General Arturo Cacdac, Jr. said Judge Danilo Suarez of Parañaque City Regional Trial Court branch 259 convicted Chu Kin Tung, alias Tony Lim/Ah Tung, 39, from Hongkong; Wong Meng Pin, alias Chua, 47, from Macau; and Li A Ging, alias Lee Ah Ching, 29, from mainland China, for violation of Section 8 (Manufacture of Dangerous Drugs and/or Controlled Precursors and Essential Chemicals) and Section 11 (Possession of Dangerous Drugs), Article II of Republic Act 9165, or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.
The court ordered them to pay a fine of P10 million each.
"I am very pleased with the decision of Judge Suarez for ensuring that justice is promptly served," Cacdac said.
He also congratulated the operating team of the Philippine National Police's (PNP) Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operations Task Force (AIDSOTF) then led by now retired Senior Superintendent Ismael Fajardo Jr., who recently joined PDEA and former AIDSOTF Commander Police Director Jefferson Soriano, now mayor of Tuguegarao City, Cagayan, who conducted the search, paving the way to the discovery of the shabu laboratory.
The Chinese nationals were arrested by PNP-AIDSOTF operatives on January 29, 2010 during the implementation of two search warrants in No. 144 Concha Cruz Drive, BF Homes, Parañaque City.
Seized during the operation were an undetermined volume of shabu, various equipment and apparatus used in the manufacture of shabu, one Glock pistol with suppressor and a hand grenade.
"This is another victory scored by the national anti-drug campaign against high-profile foreign drug personalities who operate clandestine shabu laboratories in the country," Cacdac said.
Co-accused in the case identified as Robin Bayubay Co and Xiu Xiu, who were not yet arraigned, remain at large.
Meanwhile, the Philippine National Police (PNP) lauded Tuesday the signing a law amending the Republic Act 9165, or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, saying it will improve conviction rates in illegal drugs cases.
PNP Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operation Task Force (AIDSOTF) chief Bartolome Tobias said at least 30 percent of illegal drug drugs cases from 2002 to 2007 were dismissed in courts due to technicalities.
President Benigno Aquino III signed last July the RA 10640 that modifies the custodial and confiscation process in anti-illegal drug operations, which will "heal the technicalities" that contributes to the low conviction rate.
Under RA 9165, operating units such as the PNP and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) are required to conduct an inventory of the seized suspected illegal drugs and other items immediately in the place where the operation took place and in presence of the suspect/s and three other witnesses: an elected government official, a prosecutor and a mediaman.
"Ito 'yung nakita natin na number one ground for dismissal ng mga drug related cases 'yung due to non compliance ng section 21," Tobias said.
Under the RA 10640, however, the authorities are given the permission to transfer the seized items and conduct the inventory at the nearest police station in the area of operation with only two witnesses: a prosecutor or a mediaman and an elected government official.
Tobias said the inventory after the anti-illegal drugs operations last for more than 24 hours depending on the volume of the siezed items.
The official said critics might denounce the amendment thinking that the authorities will be given a chance to manipulate the seized items ones they have already transported it to another place for inventory.
"Hindi mawawala talaga yang mga ganyang allegations. Actually kahit nga ngayon may mga allegations, ang unang allegations ng akusado, ng suspect, hindi naman aamin yan for example nakuhanan mo na ng sampung kilong shabu, ang ano dito is patunayan niya sa korte," Tobias said.
Tobias added that the evidences presented, usually in the court or in press conferences should not be touched by anyone not in the operation or else the case will be dismissed and the suspects will be acquitted.
He said the PNP aims to increase the conviction rate in illegal drugs cases under the new law to 100 percent. (SDR/Third Anne Peralta/Sunnex)