5 Moro Islamic Liberation Front rebels, 2 others caught

SEVEN persons, five of them said to be members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front were arrested by agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency in separate buy-bust operations in Mindanao which led in the confiscation of over P1 million worth of suspected shabu, PDEA chair, Director General Aaron N. Aquino reported yesterday.

The five suspected MILF members identified as Noraida Sabang, 34; Namraida Sengkong, 32; Baldido Nasser, 25; Zainodin Until, 29; and Anwar Macapendeg, 25, were tagged as members of the Ameril Drug Group whose leader Allan Ameril was arrested last year in Tacurong City, the PDEA chair said.

According to Aquino, the five known ‘high-value’ drug targets who were believed to be still receiving orders from the jailed Ameril yielded some P680,000 worth of the so-called ‘poor man’s cocaine’ during their arrest along the national highway in Barangay Kalawag 3 in Isulan, Sultan Kudarat shortly before noon last Thursday.

Members of the PDEA Regional Office 12, assisted by the local police confiscated around 100 grams of shabu, a mobile phone, the marked money, a vehicle and the suspects’ MILF identification cards.

Another sting in Bgy. Kabengi in Datu Saudi Ampatuan, Maguindanao resulted in the arrest of dance instructor Basir Benito and Simen Sambolawan, both known ‘HVT’s in the province after they conspired to sell nearly P350,000 worth of shabu to an undercover operative of the PDEA Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Regional Office.

Recovered from the duo’s possession were two large heat-sealed plastic sachets containing some 51 grams of shabu, mobile phones, IDs and the marked money they received from a poseur.