AS President Robrigo Duterte’s term officially started Friday, leading drug personalities were killed in separate police operations in Negros Oriental and Sorsogon, while several others were arrested.
Negros Oriental Provincial Police Office (NORPPO) director, Senior Supt. Harris Fama, identified the slain illegal drug dealer as Lito Belandres, alias “Paye” of Oslob Cebu.
Fama said that Belandres was killed Friday evening in Barangay Canday, Dumaguete City after he engaged a police team in a shootout when they came to serve an arrest warrant for illegal drugs.
Police report added that Belandres operates in Oslob, Cebu and is a known affiliate of Cebu’s top drug lord – “Jaguar” – who was killed during a police operation in Las Piñas last month.
Belandres was originally from Barangay Canday-ong in Dumaguete City and was the top target in the Negros Oriental police drug watch list. He was arrested in 2009 in Cebu for violation of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.
Also arrested in another buy-bust operation was Jun-jun Tejeros alias “Ambak” of Barangay 2 in Dumaguete City after handing over to a poseur buyer one sachet of shabu (methamphetamine hydrochloride).
Seized from him were two more sealed plastic sachets of shabu worth P10,000.
Fama added that a total of 31 drug personalities in Guinhulngan City surrendered on Wednesday as the police continues to intensify its campaign against illegal drugs.
The said drug personalities signed an undertaking of support to the Guinhulngan City Police Station in the campaign against illegal drugs, Fama said.
Similarly, in Sorsogon province, suspected drug pusher Allan Grecia was killed when he resisted arrest and shot it out with anti-narcotics agents in Irosin town, Police Senior Insp. Maria Luisa Calubaquib, PNP Bicol spokesperson, said.
Arrested in the same operation were Ponciano Lim Lerma, Quanito Emor alias “Bingkok”, and Robin Alarcon alias “Buhaya”.
Calubaquib said the suspects were on the illegal drug watch list of the police.
Chief Supt. Augusto Marquez, Philippine National Police (PNP) Bicol regional director, told The Manila Times that there is not a single village in Bicol without illegal drug operations.
Marquez admitted that the fight against illegal drugs is bloody when members of drug syndicates, drug peddlers and users opt to fight the authorities.
RHAYDZ B. BARCIA and Anthony Vargas