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Saturday, January 19, 2019

Wrong turn

A POLICE officer's son who applied to become a member of the police force was caught carrying illegal drugs worth more than P400,000 in Barangay Buanoy, Balamban last Tuesday night.

Investigator PO2 Alfredo de Gracia identified the suspect as Jerome Flores Armecin, 28.

In Barangay Pasil, Cebu City, police operatives seized P350,000 worth of suspected shabu during a buy-bust operation yesterday morning.

Armecin tried to elude a checkpoint in Buanoy, Balamban but law enforcers blocked his way. He was unable to show registration documents for the motorcycle he was driving.

During the inspection, the police found suspected shabu in Armecin’s sling bag.

Applicant

Police learned that Armecin, son of SPO3 Ulysses Armecin of Sogod Police Station, wanted to be a policeman.

“He submitted papers required of police applicants and he was supposed to attend today an orientation at the Police Regional Office 7,” de Gracia said yesterday in a phone interview.

The suspect graduated in 2011 with a degree in nursing.

Sun.Star Cebu tried but failed to interview SPO3 Armecin by phone.

De Gracia said that the younger Armecin claimed he is only a drug courier.

Police seized from Armecin eight large plastic packs of what appeared to be shabu weighing 40.60 grams. The suspected illegal drugs have a street value of P479,080.

Law enforcers found empty plastic packets suspected to be used in repacking shabu in the younger Armecin’s possession. The police also confiscated the motorcycle driven by the suspect as this does not have a license plate.

Three receipts of a money transfer firm were found with the younger Armecin. De Gracia said that it is possible that the receipts were for payments for illegal drugs.

Customers

De Gracia said that Armecin admitted during interrogation that his customer was from Pinamungajan.

Armecin and the buyer completed their deal in Toledo City. The suspect traveled to Balamban because he was supposed to deliver the remaining illegal drugs to his other customers.

De Gracia said Armecin refused to divulge the names of his boss and his customers.

The suspect told the police that his father was not aware that he is involved in the illegal drugs trade.

The older Armecin told de Gracia that as far as he knows, his son is a drug dependent.

Miingon iyang amahan nga ila na daw gibadlong pero dili patuo (The father told me that he told his son to stop using drugs but the younger Armecin did not listen),” de Gracia said.

Charge

He said that they did not believe the younger Armecin who said his father is a cop. The law enforcers had to call the Sogod Police Station to verify the younger Armecin’s claim.

The younger Armecin was charged for violating the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 before the Cebu Provincial Prosecutor's Office yesterday. He was also charged for violating traffic laws.

De Gracia said that SPO3 Armecin was not around during the inquest proceeding involving his son.

The complaints against the younger Armecin will be elevated to court for the trial. Violation of Section 11 of Dangerous Drugs Act is non-bailable when the seized illegal drugs weigh more than five grams.

Goliath’s fall

Meanwhile, a team from the Pasil Police Station, led by Senior Insp. Chuck Barandog, arrested Jover R. Rosagaran and Ferns “Goliath” Villanueva.

Rosagaran and Villanueva were arrested after completing a P500-transaction with an undercover policeman who pretended to buy illegal drugs inside a room the suspects were renting on M. dela Concepcion St.

Barandog said that Judge Samuel Malazarte of the Regional Trial Court Branch 7 issued an arrest warrant against Villanueva last January.

“We’ve been monitoring one of them on and off because we have to keep watch of many suspects,” Barandog said in Cebuano.

Police confiscated one large pack, three medium packs and 24 small packs of suspected shabu from the suspects.

The suspected shabu are worth P350,000, Barandog said.

Police also seized from Rosagaran P1,440 in cash believed to be proceeds from illegal drugs transactions and the marked P500 bill used by the undercover policeman.

Rosagaran and Villanueva refused to be interviewed by news reporters. They are detained at the Pasil Police Station stockade.

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