AUTHORITIES have seized over P50 million worth of giant clams, locally known as taklobo, in an entrapment operation in Negros Oriental, Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Debold Sinas said on Saturday, February 13, 2021.
Police arrested Ricardo Santiana dela Cruz Jr. during the entrapment operation.
Dela Cruz was allegedly the caretaker. The owner, a certain Yan Hu Liang alias Sunny, is at large.
The taklobo is an endangered species. Under the Philippine Fisheries Code, harvesting, selling or buying, and transporting taklobo is illegal. The suspects will be charged with violation of the Code.
Sinas said the poseur buyer was able to buy 1,000 kilograms of taklobo worth P5 million from Dela Cruz in Barangay Pagatban in Bayawan City, Negros Oriental.
Around 10,000 kilos of giant clams with a selling price of P50 million were also seized.
The entrapment operation was conducted by operating units of Crime Investigation and Detection Group RFU 7 Negros Oriental PFU, Bureau of Fish and Aquatic Resources, Bayawan City Police Station, Negros Oriental Police Provincial Office and 1ST Provincial Mobile Force Company. (Third Anne Peralta-Malonzo / SunStar Philippines)