PDEA nets 2,825 drug suspects in Q1

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The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and other law enforcement agencies accomplished more in their anti-illegal drug operations in the first quarter of 2014 compared to the same period the previous year.

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As the premier government agency against illegal drugs, the PDEA conducted 3,141 anti-illegal drug operations from January to March 2014, with the support of the Philippine National Police (PNP), the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the other agencies.

“This is 36.8 percent more than the operations conducted for the similar interval in 2013. As a result of increased conduct of operations, the number of drug personalities arrested [also]increased by 7.46 percent from last year’s 2,629 to 2,825 this year,” said Undersecretary Arturo Cacdac Jr., PDEA director general.

The biggest increase—335 percent— was recorded in the street value of illegal drugs and controlled precursors and essential chemicals seized in the period—from P312 million in 2013 to P1.3 billion in 2014.

“Compared to the preceding year, the amount of confiscated dangerous drugs this year trebled owing to the recovered bricks of cocaine in Davao City,” Cacdac said.

The PDEA has shifted its efforts to the neutralization of high-value targets and the conduct of high-impact operations in response to President Benigno Aquino 3rd’s marching order to suppress the supply of illegal drugs in the country.

During the first three months of 2014, 100 drug dens were dismantled vis-a-vis the 31 illegal facilities shut down in the same period in 2013, an increase of 222.58 percent.

The agency neutralized one-stop-shop facilities for drug users where dangerous drugs are sold and consumed.

“In addition, anti-drug operatives eradicated 192 marijuana plantation sites from January to March 2014, in contrast to the output of 175 illegal hemp cultivation sites destroyed for the period in 2013, an increase of 9.71 percent,” Cacdac said.

He added that the achievement was attributed to the constant collaboration and cooperation among law enforcement and government agencies, and the active support and participation of the public in the national anti-drug campaign.

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