SURIGAO CITY -- A surgeon working for a government hospital and a suspected drug pusher were arrested in drug bust at a guest house in Butuan City, Monday morning, August 22.
Police Officer 3 Anthony Echin, media relation officer of Butuan City Police Office (BCPO) identified the arrested as Jefrix Namoca Galon alias Jepoy, 26, a resident of Purok 4, Barangay San Ignacio in Butuan City who was staying at Purok 5, Barangay Limaha in Butuan and Dr. Frederick Alegado Padilla, 36, married and a surgeon working at Butuan Medical Center.
The elements of the City Anti-Illegal Drug Unit (CAIDU) together with the Special Weapons and Tactics (Swat) unit under the supervision of Police Superintendent Excelso Lazaga Jr. led the drug bust.
Superintendent Rowena Martinez, head of CAIDU of the BCPO, said Galon had been monitored for two weeks as he is on the watchlist on illegal drug personalities with a street level category in Butuan.
“We’ve observed that he had been staying at Gloreto Guest House for quite some time and had been transferring from one room to another. Then a Kia Rio vehicle had also been noticed to be frequently visiting the said accommodation establishment. We waited for the right opportunity then we caught both of them during the buy-bust operation,” said Martinez.
Martinez added, “The surgeon who we’ve observed over the past few days to be visiting the accommodation establishment was a buyer. Initially, we even thought that the person with the Rio car was someone working with the security sector of the government, so that’s why we asked to have the SWAT to back us up. Over all we’ve seized an estimated total weight at about four grams with Dangerous Drug Board value of P47,200.00.”
Authorities seized from Galon were several sachets of methamphetamine hydrochloride, locally known as "shabu," used foil with "shabu" residue, assorted drug paraphernalia, improvised glass tooter with "shabu" residue, assorted drug paraphernalia, improvised glass tooter pipes, five pieces of forceps, used and unused aluminum foil, a bamboo sealer, 13 pieces straight cut empty sachets, five pieces disposable lighter without flame guard, three mobile phones, two pieces of P500 marked money and cash money amounting to P5,120.
The team recovered from Padilla three sachets of "shabu," improvised glass pipe and cash amounting to P1,700.
Butuan City Mayor Ronnie Vicente Lagnada said the incident was unfortunate and warned government workers to do away with any involvement in illegal drugs.
"While it is unfortunate, let me emphasize that we do not condone such act by one of our employees. The apprehension of Dr. Padilla, Medical Officer III at Butuan Medical Center, may serve as a warning to all employees of the City Government who are involved in the illegal drug activity. As of writing, I have already tasked our city legal officer to determine any administrative case that may be filed against Dr. Padilla in relation to his apprehension," said Lagnada in a statement.