CAMP DIEGO SILANG, La Union: Joint operatives of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in Region I and Ilocus Sur police seized P4.5 million worth of shabu during a raid in Barangay Bekkes, Tagudin, Ilocos Sur, this weekend.
Confiscated from the residence of a 70-year-old man and his nephew were 650 grams of shabu, assorted drug paraphernalia, an M-16 armalite rifle with live ammunitions and Banco De Oro cash deposit slips.
“It is so far the biggest catch in this area that we got,” PDEA regional director Adrian Alvarino told The Manila Times, adding that the suspects were classified as safekeepers as they are the ones handling the drugs for distribution.
Alvarino identified suspect as Genaro Talino and Antonio Ugay, 37.
Alvarino said the Banco De Oro cash deposits slips found will be used as evidence to help trace the identities of the suspects’ customers or suppliers.
“These suspects were massive suppliers of shabu patrons in the areas of La Union, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur and Baguio City, based on our case build-up, they get their supply, hand-carried from the National Capital Region,” he added.
But Talino, whom arresting agents momentarily rushed to a hospital in route to Camp Diego Silang in the PDEA headquarters in San Fernando City due to hypertension, denied owning the drugs.
“Hindi sa amin yun, inilagay lang yun. Parang sa bayaw kong si Carlo yun, tuwing pumupunta siya pinapalabas kami. Hindi ko alam na may ganyan na ilalagay [We don’t own the drugs, those were just placed there. Maybe my brother-in-law Carlo owns them because everytime he comes, he asks us to leave. I don’t know that drugs were placed there], ” Talino said.
“Tuwing pumupunta siya, aalis siya (Carlo), may nakabalot na dala [Whenever he comes, he leaves with a package],” Talino admitted. This admission, Alvarino said, may be used against them in court after his denial.
Alvarino said the impact left by the latest bust would greatly affect the supply of regular drug users and pushers in Ilocos Region.
Their arrest, based on a search warrant, is non-bailable for violation of RA 9165 or possession of dangerous drugs.