• Judge held for gun shipment at Zamboanga airport

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    ZAMBOANGA CITY: Police held a judge for investigation after a gun cargo she was shipping for Manila was intercepted at the Zamboanga City airport, officials said on Sunday.

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    Regional police spokesman Chief Inspector Ariel Huesca said the judge based in Sulu province claimed ownership of the cargo that contained a .380 pistol, a magazine and seven bullets, before it could be sent to Manila through AP Cargo courier.

    Huesca said police security at the airport led by Inspector Jose Krispher Abas discovered the gun during a routine inspection and authorities informed the judge, who rushed to the airport and presented her gun license. But her permit to carry the pistol outside her house was expired and is now the basis of the police to hold the cargo and further investigate the judge.

    Huesca said the cargo was intended to a fiscal at the Department of Justice in Manila.

    “She was supposed to board the Cebu Pacific Flight 5J852, but has been placed under questioning and investigation at the Zamboanga airport,” he said.

    Just recently, airport police also seized an automatic rifle which was dismantled and concealed in a computer unit sent through LBC Express. The cargo, bound for Tawi-Tawi province, was discovered during an inspection.

    Airport police also seized a cargo containing a kilo of shabu or methamphetamine hydrochloride which is also known as “poor man’s cocaine” on March 6. The cargo from Caloocan City, which was shipped through LBC Express, was bound for Tawi-Tawi when it was intercepted during a routine security inspection. The cargo was consigned to Dayang Askali and shipped by Walter Aquino.

    Tawi-Tawi is one of five provinces under the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao in the southern Philippines.

    Officials said the drugs were hidden with other items in the box when it was discovered by alert airport security. The drugs were passed off as a corn starch.

    It was not immediately known whether the names of the consignee and its sender are fictitious or not, but authorities have began investigating the seizure of the illegal cargo.

    Investigators are checking on how the cargo managed to pass through a supposed tight security at the airport in Manila. It was not the first time such drug cargo had been intercepted at the local airport and previous haul yielded millions of pesos worth of shabu and even weapons’ spare parts and munitions.

    Despite being a small airport, local aviation security personnel have excelled tremendously as one of the best in the southern Philippines.

    In January, police security at the local airport intercepted a cargo of marijuana worth over a million pesos after it passed a routine security inspection. The marijuana was concealed in several plastic bags along with coffee and milk powder and bound for the town of Jolo. The cargo, passed through LBC Express, was shipped from Las Pinas City by Abdusahar Albi with Nadzmer Murajam as its consignee.

    Police made no arrest, but officials said investigation is going on to determine whether the names on the package were fictitious or not.

    Marijuana is still illegal in the Philippines and listed as among dangerous drugs whose medical usage and sale are strictly prohibited.

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