PDEA tracks down ‘brains’ of shabu smuggling from US

November 13, 2019

AGENTS of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency are conducting follow-up operations to identify and arrest the main source of the shabu shipped from the United States and received by two suspects arrested in a controlled delivery operation in Makati City on Tuesday afternoon, PDEA chair, Director General Aaron N. Aquino said yesterday.

The official said that the follow-up operations are being conducted by the PDEA with the help of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Drug Interdiction Task Group and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency.

The ‘controlled delivery’ operation as defined in Republic Act 9165 or The Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002,is an investigation technique of allowing an unlawful or suspect consignment of any Dangerous Drug (DD) and Controlled Precursors and Essential Chemicals (CPECs), equipment or paraphernalia, or property believed to be derived directly or indirectly from any offense, to pass into, through or out of the country under the supervision of an authorized officer, with a view of gathering evidence to identify any person involved in any dangerous drugs related offense, or to facilitate prosecution of that offense.

It is a form of entrapment where diligence must be exercised in the conduct of delivery to its destination by observing the rules on evidence and warrantless arrests, searches and seizures.

On Tuesday afternoon, members of the PDEA National Capital Region headed by Director Joel Plaza, backed up by officers from the NAIA-IADITG and the Makati City Police Station conducted the controlled delivery operation which led in the arrest of Edison Pascual Chua, a resident of Manansala Tower, Makati City whose real name turned out to be Alex Teehankee Zulueta and his cohort Brian James Macatangay Bantegui, a resident of San Juan City.

The two were placed under arrest after they received the packages containing the illegal drugs shipped from the U.S.

Aquino said that an initial documentation and screening of the content of the package carried out by a Bureau of Customs examiner yielded positive result for the presence of methamphetamine hydrochloride.