A POLICE officer and two suspected drug pushers were arrested in an anti-illegal drug operation in Barangay Sabang, Danao City last Tuesday morning.
PO1 Michael Vincent Beniabila Monares was caught buying a sachet of shabu from Samie Lauro Sinilong by operatives of the City Anti-Illegal Drugs Unit (Caidu).
Monares also tested positive for illegal drug use, said Senior Insp. Alejandro Batobalonos, the Danao City police chief.
The 29-year-old police officer was ordered suspended from Aug. 1 until today for simple neglect of duty and had already turned over his government-issued service pistol.
Monares has been absent for more than a month without filing for an official leave.
His name, though, is not on the list of drug personalities in the city.
Police Regional Office 7 Director Chief Supt. Noli Taliño has ordered an administrative investigation on Monares.
Batobalonos said they will submit an investigation report to the Regional Investigation and Detective Management Division 7, so the investigation can start.
A complaint for violating Section 11 (possession of dangerous drugs) of Republic Act (RA) 9165, or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, will be filed against Monares before the Office of Danao City Prosecutor.
Monares is a resident of Sabang and a member of the Cebu City Police Office-Tourist Police Unit.
He told Batobalonos that he sniffed shabu for the last time last Monday.
“I asked him why he hasn’t gone back to work, he said he wouldn’t be getting his salary anyway. But I think he just wanted to avoid drug tests,” said Batobalonos in Cebuano.
Before Monares was caught with Sinilong at 10:15 a.m., Caidu operatives had targeted Sinilong and a relative Saturnino Lawas Lauro at 2:25 a.m.
Lauro and a suspected junkie Sari Lawas Hermoso were caught, while Sinilong escaped.
Batobalonos said they continued their hot pursuit until they found Sinilong in the interior portion of Sabang transacting with Monares, who was in civilian clothes.
Ten sachets of shabu were seized from Sinilong, Lauro, and Hermoso. They were also charged with violation of RA 9165.
In another development, 12 drug personalities surrendered to the Lapu-Lapu City Police Office (LCPO) yesterday morning.
The group, whose members claimed to be drug pushers, showed up at the office of Senior Supt. Rommel Cabagnot, the LCPO director, past 10 :30 a.m., and turned in two .45 pistol with live ammunition.
Among the surrenderees were Rasul Pabilla, 41, the second top drug personality in the city, and Brix Daligding, 35, the third top drug personality.
Cabagnot said the surrenderees pledged to tell them everything they know, including who supplied them with drugs.
The other surrenderees were identified as Allan Mapande, Arman Pinto, Lantong Tandayao, Baradi Pascan, Alimona Saomay, Norban Gunti, Jalil Pabilla, Jamil Pabilla, Abdullah Pabilla and Widad Mamao.
The Pabillas are believed to be relatives living in Camella Homes Phase 1 in Barangay Pajac.
Cabagnot said some of them started their illegal drug activities in Butuan and in Davao.
Rasul assured police that he and his group would no longer go back to their illegal activities.
“Honestly, we stopped our illegal drug activity long before, but we are here because our names have yet to be cleared,” Rasul said in Cebuano.
Rasul also said they were afraid of what happened to drug personalities who were killed in police operations or by unidentified persons.
Rasul still has a pending case for illegal possession of firearms.
Daligding, for his part, said he surrendered because he wanted to change.
Cabagnot said they cannot be considered drug lords because the group has a leader.
“Their surrender will have a big impact because whenever we arrest drug suspects, they immediately point to Rasul and Daligding as their source of the drugs,” he said in Cebuano.
Some of the surrenderees went home after while others stayed past 4 p.m. for validation.
In a separate interview, Mayor Paz Radaza hoped their decision to surrender was sincere.