AUTHORITIES have arrested four watchlisted and high-value individual (HVI) suspects and seized P27.5 million worth of illegal drugs in an anti-drug operation in Zamboanga City, the police said Thursday, January 11, 2024.
The local police identified the arrested suspects as Ben Kalbi Basaluddin, 33; Wajil Handrang Jala, 38; Nadzmar Elyas Abdul, 38; and Noralyn Tahil Abdul, 38, wife of Nadzmar.
Police Colonel Alexander Lorenzo, Zamboanga City Police Office (ZCPO) director, said the four suspects were arrested in a buy-bust operation around 4:44 p.m. Wednesday, January 10, in Purok 11, Phase 1, Acacia Drive in Calarian village, Zamboanga City.
Lorenzo said the suspects were arrested after they completed a transaction of illegal drugs to an undercover police officer, who pretended to be a buyer.
Seized from the suspects were four large plastic packs containing one kilo each of shabu and one heat-sealed plastic sachet of 50 grams shabu, or for a total of four kilos and 50 grams worth P27,540,000.
He said also recovered from the suspects were a bundle of 999 pieces of P1,000 boodle money topped with one genuine P1,000 marked money.
Police Lieutenant Colonel Elmer Solon, Criminal Investigation and Detection Management Unit chief, said the anti-drug operation was launched following a series of surveillance on the illegal activities of the suspects.
Solon said the suspects were detained in preparation for the filing of charges for violation of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 against them.
The suspects were arrested by joint team of policemen and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).
Meanwhile, Lorenzo said the source of illegal drugs of the four arrested suspects was the same as that of an HVI suspect arrested in possession of P47.6 million worth of illegal drugs on December 20, 2023 in Zamboanga City.
Police arrested Alkhomunie Usil, 31, in an anti-drug operation at a pension house in Putik village on December 20, 2023.
Recovered from the arrested suspect were seven plastic packs containing seven kilos of shabu worth P47.6 million, two paper bags, 999 pieces of P1,000 bills used as boodle money topped with one genuine P1,000 used as marked money, a disposable lighter, and a cigarette pack containing a stick of cigarette. (SunStar Zamboanga)