Cebu, Bacolod police dig shabu in heels-A A +A
Tuesday, June 10, 2014
CEBU (Updated) - Illegal drugs stuffed inside a package of sandals were confiscated last Monday afternoon in Bacolod City, merely an hour before two women were caught with a similar shipment in Cebu.
The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in Western Visayas said that a kilo of shabu, believed to be worth around P7 million, was confiscated from a man in the parking lot of a mall around 2 p.m.
“So far this is the biggest illegal drug supply we have seized in the whole region,” PDEA Regional Director Paul Ledesma said.
Arrested during the operation in Bacolod was Edgardo Justo, 36, also known as Rey F. Roman.
In Cebu, PDEA 7 Operations Chief David Mark Maramba said there may be a connection between the two shipments.
“We will check. We will not discount the possibility. Let us see what will happen in our investigation,” Maramba told Sun.Star Cebu in a phone interview, adding that the agency was still checking the records.
The 58-year-old woman whom the PDEA 7 arrested in Cebu last Monday turned out to be a survivor of the large fire that hit Barangay Lorega in Cebu City last March. Her neighbors said they could not believe she or her daughter was involved in illegal drugs.
In the Bacolod operation, Justo was arrested after a decoy paid him for some illegal drugs.
A search of his pick-up vehicle yielded a package containing slippers and shoes. Upon inspection, sachets of shabu were found inserted inside the soles of these slippers and shoes.
During surveillance days before the raid, the suspect was monitored picking up contraband in a hotel and claiming a package believed to contain the slippers and shoes where the illegal drugs were found.
Ledesma said that Justo told him the illegal drugs confiscated last Monday was already the second shipment, adding that the first one, a smaller batch, arrived about two or three weeks ago.
The PDEA chief added it is possible that Justo merely received the illegal drug supply and other people were involved in distributing the drug in Negros Occidental.
Ledesma said they have yet to identify the person who sent the shipment to the suspect.
For his part, Justo denied that the illegal drugs belonged to him, claiming he was just paid P10,000 to serve as the courier.
Ledesma said that the suspect, who is detained, will be charged with the sale and possession of illegal drugs.
These offenses violate Sections 5 and 11, respectively, of Article 2 of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act.
Last April 30, PDEA agents also seized more than half a kilo of shabu with an estimated market value of P3.5 million in Cadiz City, Negros Occidental.
Two suspects were arrested and charged.
The shabu, wrapped in a sheet of carbon paper and placed inside an audio speaker system, was transported through a courier service going to Cadiz City.
Ledesma said then that this was done to evade X-ray or scanning machines since the supply came from Quezon City. (Sun.Star Cebu/Sun.Star Bacolod)
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on June 11, 2014.