P2.25-B worth of dangerous drugs destroyed

THE Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) destroyed Tuesday P2.25 billion worth of dangerous drugs, the highest since 2008 drug haul in Subic, Zambales, an official said.

Destroyed through thermal decomposition at the Integrated Waste Management, Inc. (IWMI) in Barangay Aguado, Trece Martirez City, Cavite, were a total of 577,719.4 grams of assorted pieces of drug evidence composed of shabu, ephedrine, cocaine, marijuana, diazepam, or valium, and expired medicines, said PDEA Director General Undersecretary Arturo Cacdac Jr. who led the destruction ceremony.

Thermal decomposition is the process by which various compounds are broken down into single units by the application of heat wherein reconstruction of the substances is impossible.

Based on the consolidated report of the PDEA Laboratory Service, the seized shabu which weighed 559,716.8 grams, constitutes 99.5 percent, or P2,238,867,200 of the total amount of illegal drugs destroyed at the site.

"Majority of the burned shabu (with corresponding gross weight) were seized from big anti-drug raids that happened last year in Subic, Zambales (433,236.4 grams), Lipa Batangas (101,000 grams) and those turned over by the Quezon City Police District, or QCPD (24,510.1 grams)," Cacdac said.

To recall, more than 400 kilograms of shabu were discovered by authorities in a rented house in Subic, Zambales that led to the arrest of six drug personalities on August 11, 2013, while combined elements of PDEA and the PNP raided on Christmas Day a storage facility found inside a game fowl farm in Lipa, Batangas wherein P420 million worth of shabu were confiscated. The farm was reportedly leased by alleged members of the dangerous Mexican Sinaloa Drug Cartel.

"Today's destruction is the highest in terms of total value and gross weight of dangerous drugs destroyed since the country's shabu haul of over 700 kilograms in Subic last May 2008 that were eliminated only months after," Cacdac said.

"We want the public to witness the destruction of dangerous drugs seized by drug enforcement officers in order to allay public apprehensions that these illicit substances are being reused, recycled or sold back in the streets," he added.

Cacdac lauded the efforts of the different branches of Regional Trial Courts (RTCs) in the cities of Manila, Pasay, Las Piñas, Parañaque, Quezon City, Valenzuela, Malolos, Olongapo, and Lipa, for the expeditious prosecution and disposition of drug cases that led to the prompt destruction of these illegal drugs and substances no longer needed as evidence in court.

The destruction of the dangerous drugs is in compliance with the guidelines set on the custody and disposition of seized dangerous drugs required in Section 21, Article II of Republic Act 9165, or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, and Dangerous Drugs Board Regulation 1, Series of 2002. (SDR/Sunnex)
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