ACTING on a tip from their Hong Kong and Chinese counterparts, agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency on Tuesday night smashed a major Southeast Asian drug trafficking ring operating in the country carrying out a series of operations in Metro Manila which led to the arrest of four Chinese nationals and the seizure of nearly P600 million worth of high-grade shabu, PDEA chair Director General Aaron N. Aquino announced yesterday.
The official said that around 5 a.m. Tuesday, two of the suspects identified as Lam King Wah, 35, a residence of Sea Residences in Pasay City; and Wong Ka Lok, 38, currently billeted at Red Planet Hotel, also in Pasay City were arrested in a buy-bust operation near Shell gasoline station at Aseana POWer Station in Diosdado Macapagal Boulevard, Parañaque City.
Seized from the two foreigners were two kilos of suspected high-grade shabu worth P15.4 million and 16 liters of chemicals found to be a mixture of acetone and methanol. He said that acetone is an essential chemical used in the manufacture of the so-called poor man’s cocaine.
The PDEA chief said that four hours after the two suspects were arrested, two of their companions, both believed to be “shabu chemists” and identified as Lam Win Bun, 52; and Lam Ming,Sun, 56, were arrested in another entrapment operation in front of Red Planet Hotel in Manila. A kilo of shabu worth P6.8 million was seized from the two.
“These Hong Kong nationals are believed to be the facilitators or handlers of chemists involved in the production of shabu in small kitchen-type laboratories in the metropolis,” he said.
Aquino said that following the arrest of the four, they secured a search warrant from a local court which allowed them to raid on Tuesday evening a kitchen-type laboratory being operated by the suspects inside Unit 16-G located at the 16th floor of Tower 2 Oceanaire Luxurious Residences in Mall of Asia in Pasay City.
Found inside the condo unit were finished shabu products concealed in a luggage, assorted chemicals and laboratory equipment including glass tubes, two washing machines believed being used to “dry” the drugs. An initial inventory showed that the drugs found inside the posh condominium unit could be around 80 kilos.
According to the official, the four Hong Kong nationals are also associates of another Hongkong citizen identified as Lin Hua Sen alias Ivan Go Santos, a 42-year old resident of Antipolo City, Rizal who was arrested during another sting in front of the Diamond Hotel on the service road of Roxas Boulevard on Monday.
The 5th suspect yielded 20 kilograms of suspected shabu worth P146 million which were all believed ready for distribution in the streets of Metro Manila.