THE Police Regional Office (PRO) 7 is checking reports that Cebuano businessman Peter Lim and his family have fled the country.

President Rodrigo Duterte had named Lim as part of the Chinese triad, allegedly leading the illegal drug trade operations in the Visayas.

Chief Supt. Noli Taliño, the PRO 7 director, said they are waiting for confirmation.

A news site reported that Lim and his family boarded a private jet bound for Hong Kong, 15 days after Lim’s meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte in Davao City on July 15.

Duterte had named Lim as the top drug lord handling the illegal drug trade in the Visayas region.

Earlier denial

Lim, in earlier reports, denied he is a drug lord.

The Bureau of Immigration (BI) has yet to verify that Lim has gone abroad, according to gmanewsonline.

BI spokesperson Antonette Mangrobang said they need time to confirm because Lim has more than 4,000 namesakes in their database.

Last Saturday, Sun.Star Cebu was able to interview Lim over the phone.

The businessman said his name will be cleared in due time, after the police in Albuera, Leyte tagged him as the supplier of drugs to suspected Eastern Visayas drug lord Ronaldo “Kerwin” Espinosa Jr.

Lim and his brother faced a House inquiry in 2001 led by then congressman Antonio Cuenco.

The allegations that they were involved in the illegal drug trade relied on the testimonies of their former employees Ananias Dy and Bernard Liu.

Both men, however, could no longer testify against the Lims.

Dy was killed in Labangon, Cebu City on July 8, 2006. Liu reportedly died during a burglary in 2011 in Tangke, Talisay City.