SOME 70 pieces of firearms and a substantial amount of suspected illegal drugs were seized during simultaneous raids of different towns in Nueva Ecija on Tuesday afternoon. Central Luzon Police Director, Chief Supt. Rudy Lacadin said 39 persons were also arrested in the police operation that aimed to minimize the number of loose firearms to ensure peaceful and orderly elections on May 9. Nueva Ecija is among the provinces with a history of political violence because of the presence of private armed groups in the area. Lacadin added that of the 70 firearms seized, most were caliber .45 pistols, automatic rifles including Bushmaster, carbines and the latest model of 12-gauge shotgun. Aside from guns and thousands of ammunition, the operatives also seized several grams of shabu.