THE Philippine National Police Drug Enforcement Group (PNP-DEG) headed by Brigadier General Romeo M. Caramat Jr. marks its 3rd founding anniversary today with a record accomplishment over the past nine months which has earned them congratulations from both President Duterte and PNP chief, General Archie Francisco F. Gamboa.
The PNP chief has ordered the PNP-DEG and other police units across the country to further step-up their offensive against armed and defiant illegal drug traffickers in the country with an instruction for his men to exercise all necessary precautions to ensure they won’t be harmed by their targets.
“I have echoed the guidance of President Rodrigo R. Duterte for PNP units to seize every opportunity to be on the offensive against illegal drugs. An all-out offensive put the lives of our PNP personnel at risk so we must exercise all possible precaution to ensure that they are safe and that no lives are lost,” Gen. Gamboa said amid the killing of a Parañaque City police officer by an armed drug dealer in Baclaran.
Another policeman was also injured during the shootout which also led in the killing of the suspect.
This morning, Gen. Gamboa will lead the PNP-DEG in honoring its officers and men who have greatly contributed to the huge success of the Unit over the past eight months.
They are Lieutenant Colonel Glenn C. Gonzales as Senior Field Police Commissioned Officer of the Year; Col. Beatriz S. Lising as Senior Staff PCO; Lieutenant Hazel S. Mabilin as Junior Field PCO; Lt. Fernando T. Galang as Junior Staff PCO; Senior Master Sergeant Jerrywin H. Rebosora as Senior Field Police Non-Commissioned Officer of the Year; Senior MSgt. Marianito R. Carpio Jr. as Senior Staff PNCO; Staff Sgt. Dennis C. Tan as Junior Field PNCO; SSgt. Lorence Christopher I. Mesias as Junior Staff PNCO; Non-Uniformed Personnel Lallage Pia D. Bautista as NUP of the Year; and the DEG Special Operations Unit 4 as SOU of the Year.
Gen. Gamboa appointed Caramat, a member of Philippine Military Academy ‘Tanglaw Diwa’ Class of 1992 as the 4th PNP-DEG director on October 21 last year, shortly after he assumed his post as the 23rd PNP chief. Caramat was then the director of the PNP Integrity Monitoring and Enforcement Group.
Pouring all necessary manpower and logistical resources to the PNP-DEG, Gen. Gamboa also oversaw the launching of the PNP Special Project ‘Hydra’ which led to the confiscation of more than a ton of high-grade methamphetamine hydrochloride or more popularly known as ‘shabu’ worth over P12.7 billion in the country or ‘ice’ abroad since last October.
When it was initially established three years ago, the PNP-DEG only had 133 personnel and three Special Operations Units. Under Gen. Gamboa, the PNP-DEG started to become a much bigger PNP National Operational Support Unit and now has more than 760 officers and men with nine active SOUs spread across Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
Under Gen. Gamboa, the PNP-DEG had already hauled nearly P12.7 billion worth of illegal drugs as a result of 138 operations which include service of search warrants, buy-bust, drug interdiction, controlled delivery and consented search.
Over the past nine months, PNP-DEG operatives, with the help of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency headed by Director General Wilkins M. Villanueva and other Police Regional Offices specifically the National Capital Region Police Office headed by Major Gen. Debol M. Sinas, the Police Regional Office 3 under Brig. Gen. Rhodel O. Sermonia and the PRO4-A headed by Brig. Gen. Vicente D. Danao Jr. have launched operations which led in the arrest of 186 ‘HVTs including 10 foreign nationals.
Those anti-narcotics operations likewise led in the killing of seven armed drug traffickers in shootouts and the recovery of prohibited drugs including some 1.844 kilograms of shabu, 1.6 kilos of cocaine and 4,766 pieces of the designer drug called ‘Ecstasy.’
On November 26, 2019, PNP-DEG operatives made its biggest haul when they arrested Chinese national Liu Chao in an operation in Makati City which yielded 371 kilos of shabu worth P2.5 billion.
The COVID-19 virus also did not stop the PNP-DEG from doing its job best. On June 4, Caramat’s men arrested Chinese national Yuwen Cai and his two Filipina accomplices in Marilao, Bulacan during an anti-narcotics operation which resulted in the seizure of 828 kilograms of shabu valued at P5.6 billion.
Two days later, a follow-up operation in Parañaque City led in the recovery of 36 more kilos of the drug worth P244.8 million and the killing of two armed drug traffickers including Jin Lon Cai, a son of Yuwen Cai following a shootout with undercover officers.
Last June 11, another buy-bust operation in General Trias, Cavite ended up in the arrest of Muad Abedin, a major distributor of a Chinese Triad in the country after he sold 375 kilograms of shabu worth P2.6 billion to a poseur.
Last month, President Duterte did not mince any word in praising Gen. Gamboa for his anti-drug feat.