Shabu in sandals

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Tuesday, June 10, 2014


SOME P8 million worth of shabu were confiscated by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Central Visayas Monday afternoon.

A total of 20 large packs of the drug, weighing 50 grams each, were seized from Editha Yamas Paul, 58, and her daughter Maricris Paul, 32, both residents of Barangay Lorega, Cebu City.

PDEA agents in Central Visayas Region received a tip from the PDEA-National Capital Region (NCR) that the shabu would be delivered through a courier service on Monday.

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With the coordination of the courier service company, the PDEA waited for the package to arrive in the city, then intercepted Editha and Maricris after the women claimed the drugs at 3:50 p.m.

HIDDEN IN THEIR SOLES
BY HIDDEN IN THEIR SOLES. PDEA-Central Visayas Operarations Chief David Mark Maramba (foreground left) shows the sandals with big packs of shabu that were allegedly hidden in their soles. These were allegedly seized from Editha Yamas Paul, 58, and her daughter Maricris, 32, when they went to a courier agency to pick up the box the sandals were shipped in. (Amper Campana/Sun.Star Cebu)


The package was reportedly sent from a mall in Alabang.

According to PDEA-Central Visayas Operations Chief David Mark Maramba, the package contained slippers and sandals.

When the box was opened, the agents found 10 pairs of slippers embellished with feathers and, beneath this batch, another 10 pairs of rubber wedge sandals.

The agents noticed a bulge in the heels of the wedge sandals, then found packs of shabu concealed just above the soles.

In an interview with reporters, Editha pleaded with the PDEA to release her daughter, who she said just accompanied her in claiming the package from a courier outlet in Cebu City.

PDEA declined to name the courier service, which they said cooperated in the investigation.

“Pwerte nako guola karon. Hangyo nako sa mga police na pagawason lang intawon akong anak (I am very distressed. All I’m asking for the police is to let my daughter go),” said Editha, who is a laundrywoman.

Maricris reportedly gave birth two months ago.

But when Editha was asked who told her to claim the item, her comments were limited.

“Wala ko kaila nila (I don’t know who they are),” she said, then declined to comment further.

Maramba said they are now tracking down some personalities; he also said the agency had been informed that a similar operation was intercepted in Metro Manila last week.

“We will check if the same people were responsible, but we cannot yet conclude,” said Maramba.

Some broadsheets reported last week that half a kilo of what appeared to be shabu had been hidden in the heels of women’s sandals, but were intercepted in the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

These were supposed to be bound for Zamboanga, but the drugs were detected by X-rays at the cargo terminal.

In Monday’s case, Maramba said the PDEA will still check if the courier outlet has any liability, but added that the outlet’s staff was very cooperative.

A case for allegedly violating Section 26 — conspiracy to transport illegal drugs — of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drug Act of 2002 will be filed against Editha and Maricris.

The two women cannot post bail and, if found guilty, may end up spending the rest of their lives in prison. (Sun.Star Cebu)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on June 10, 2014.

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