THE country’s war on COVID-19 has not deterred the Philippine National Police from continuing its crackdown on illegal drug trafficking and abuse as shown by the seizure of some P11 billion worth of shabu and other dangerous drugs over the past six months, a record scored by the police under the 4-year Duterte administration, the Journal Group learned.
Apart from the P11 billion worth of dangerous drugs, PNP agents across the country also conducted 25,612 anti-narcotics operations during the period resulting in the arrest of 38,178 drug peddlers and users, scores of them considered as ‘high-value targets,’ said PNP chief, General Archie Francisco F. Gamboa.
“I am pleased to announce the highlights of continuing police action in support of the national anti-illegal drugs campaign of government,” Gen. Gamboa said as he commended his men specifically those from the PNP Drug Enforcement Group and the 17 other Police Regional Offices led by the National Capital Region Police Office for their huge success in fighting illegal drugs.
The PNP-DEG headed by Brigadier Gen. Romeo M. Caramat Jr. marked its 3rd founding anniversary on Wednesday last week amid an order from Gen. Gamboa to further intensify their war on drugs. Gen. Gamboa has commended the PNP-DEG for their success in the war against illegal drug trafficking and abuse amid the major role being played by the force in stopping the spread of the deadly COVID-19 virus.
“On our campaign against illegal drugs, I commend the anti-illegal drug accomplishments of our operatives as our war on illegal drugs continues in its intensity together with our intensified war against the pandemic,” the PNP chief said as he vowed a continuing unrelenting crackdown against drugs in support of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency under its new Director General, Wilkins M. Villanueva.
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 PDEA and other Police Regional Offices specifically the National Capital Region Police Office headed by Major Gen. Debold 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.
Last 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.
Gen. Gamboa said that from January 1 to last June 30, police units across the country in coordination with the PDEA seized a total of 1,571.33 kilograms of illegal drugs. “That’s 1.57 metric tons of crystal meth or shabu; and 2,907 kilograms or 2.9 metric tons of marijuana—all with an estimated value of P 11.03 billion,” he said.
The opening days of the 2nd semester of year 2020 likewise saw a number of successful anti-drug operations by the police as it continued its war on drugs and organized crime, the PNP chief said.
Since Gen. Gamboa became the country’s top cop last October 14, 2019 to last May 23, police have conducted a total of 33,039 anti-narcotics operations which resulted in the arrest of 49,648 drug offenders, the surrender of 2,857 others and the seizure of 812,474.36 kilograms of shabu worth P5.524 billion.
The PNP’s war on drugs is being spearheaded by the PNP-DEG and the NCRPO which are currently partnering to track down more ‘high-value targets’ in Metro Manila specifically members of well-organized Chinese drug syndicates involved in large-scale distribution of shabu in the country.
“We are doubling our effort to account for more big fishes in the illegal drug industry in the country with the help of the NCRPO and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency. In particular, we are targeting suspects connected with major Chinese drug trafficking rings who are using the Philippines as a major base for their operations,” said Caramat