THE Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in Western Visayas Region seized a kilo of shabu (methamphetamine hydrochloride) worth P7 million during a raid Monday afternoon at the parking lot of Gaisano grand mall in Bacolod City.

“So far this is the biggest illegal drug supply we have seized in the whole region,” PDEA Regional Director Paul Ledesma said.

Ledesma said they confiscated the kilo of shabu from 36-year-old Edgardo Justo alias “Rey F. Roman”.

Bacolod police sieze shabu drugs hidden inside sandals
PDEA-Western Visayas Regional Director Paul Ledesma with drug suspect Edgardo Justo (seated), who was arrested after a kilo of shabu was found in his possession in Bacolod City on Monday.

The contraband was seized from Justo’s possession in a buy-bust operation around 2 p.m.

After the purchase was completed, the suspect was arrested. 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 the slippers and shoes.

The operatives conducted surveillance operations days before the raid.

The suspect was monitored picking up contraband at a hotel and claiming a package believed to contain the slippers and shoes where the illegal drugs were found.

Ledesma said Justo told him that the illegal drugs supply they confiscated on Monday was already the second shipment, adding that the first one of lesser volume arrived about two or three weeks ago.

The PDEA chief added it is possible that Justo receives the illegal drug supply and other people are involved in its distribution in the entire Negros Occidental province.

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 belong to him, claiming he was just paid P10,000 to serve as courier.

Ledesma said the suspect, who is detained at Police Station 8, will be charged for selling and possession of illegal drugs.

The cases are for violation of Sections 5 and 11, respectively, of Article II of Republic Act 9165 otherwise known as 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 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.

Meanwhile, in Cebu City, some P8 million worth of shabu, which were hidden inside the soles of rubber wedge sandals, were seized by authorities also on Monday afternoon. [READ: Shabu in sandals]

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.

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.

The package was reportedly sent from a mall in Alabang. (Sun.Star Bacolod/Sun.Star Cebu/Sunnex)