THERE seems to be a proliferation of the so-called ‘party drugs’ ecstasy, despite the pandemic.
Believe it or not, a total of 23,482 Ecstasy tablets worth P42.27 million were seized by Bureau of Customs Port of NAIA (BOC-NAIA) for the year 2020.
And then just a few days into 2021, the BOC-NAIA, along with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and the NAIA- Inter-Agency Drug Interdiction Task Group (NAIA-IADITG), seized 535 pieces of ecstasy tablets with a street value of P1 million in an air parcel at Central Mail Exchange Center (CMEC).
The seized tablets were initially discovered by Customs personnel at CMEC during the 100 percent physical examination of the air parcel. Subsequent laboratory tests conducted by the PDEA confirmed the tablets as ecstasy or “party drugs”. Records further show that subject air parcel came from the Netherlands and was misdeclared as “documents”.
The said 535 pieces of ecstasy tablets were turned over to the PDEA for further investigation and possible prosecution of individuals involved in the illegal importation for violation of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 (RA No. 9165) and Section 1401 Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (RA No. 10863).
The BOC-NAIA under the stewardship of its chief, Mimel Talusan, is in full support of Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero’s anti-smuggling campaign.
Talusan said the Bureau of Customs-NAIA will remain vigilant against smuggling attempts to illegally import unregistered medicines and other prohibited, restricted and regulated goods without proper clearances from concerned agency/office, aside from dangerous goods.
In 2020, the Bureau of Customs condemned all unregistered medicines and pharmaceuticals which arrived into the country without importation permits.
On the part of the BOC-NAIA alone, 373.19 tons of unsafe and other hazardous goods including unregistered medicines and pharmaceuticals without Food and Drug Administration permits and clearances were condemned and destroyed in Trece Martires, Cavite.
In Ermita just the other day, the Manila Police District (MPD) headed by Gen. Leo Francisco killed in a shooting encounter a drug suspect known only though his alias as “Kuya” and tagged by the police as behind the distribution of illegal drugs in Metro Manila and nearby provinces, while his companion, a certain ‘Ish’, escaped. The two are said to be behind the rampant sale of ecstasy within Metro Manila.
In fact during the operation, police recovered from the slain suspect 800 pieces of ecstasy tablets with a street value of at least P1.36 million, apart from two heat-sealed plastic sachets with 50 grams of suspected shabu worth P340,000, a .45 cal. pistol and the P500 buy-bust money.
The said incident was said to have stemmed from a previous police operation in Cainta, Rizal where a certain Christine Almario Pimentel, 30, was arrested during a raid in her apartment.
There, police confiscated at least a thousand pieces, again, of ecstasy tablets, along with marijuana and bottles of chemicals believed to be ingredients for making shabu, a plastic sealer and different-sized plastic bags containing shabu.
Ecstasy, for the longest time, had been consistently present in several controversial incidents including the death of an actor many years ago.
These so-called ‘pink drugs’’ seem to be a ‘must’ for some parties specially among the youngsters, as they are said to be great in boosting one’s sexual drive. However, if taken the wrong way, these drugs can also cause death.
The fact that the BOC-NAIA was able to intercept over P42 million worth of ecstasy last year only goes to show that it is in high demand in the country and may have been flooding the illegal drug market for so long. Who could be behind its proliferation? Hmmmm….
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