MALOLOS, Bulacan: Ten kilos of suspected ‘shabu’ were seized by joint operatives of the Regional Intelligence Division-Special Concern Unit (RID-SCU) of the Police Regional Office 3 (PRO3) and Baliuag Police from civilian “assets” of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) in a checkpoint in Barangay Tarcan, Baliuag town.
The confiscated crystalline substance was placed in 10 big plastic ziplock bags with an estimated street value of P50 million.
Personnel from RID-SCU, PRO3 on Tuesday coordinated with Baliwag Police Station for the conduct of a surveillance operation on illegal drug transactions in the towns of Baliwag and San Rafael.
Around 7 p.m. of the same day, the team informed Baliwag police that they were on board a black Ford Ranger with plate number ATA 4809, parked at the SM City Baliuag while monitoring the arrival of a silver Mitsubishi Montero Sports (WIM-122) allegedly to be used in the drug transaction according to their informant.
When the vehicle arrived, the occupants alighted and entered a coffee shop at the mall, while two others appeared and boarded the Montero, then drove towards San Rafael town and entered a resort.
The two original occupants of the vehicle later arrived at the resort on board a tricycle.
A stakeout was conducted outside the resort while Baliuag police established a checkpoint along Doña Remedios Trinidad Highway in Barangay Tarcan.
At about 9:15 p.m., Baliuag chief of police, Supt. Froilan Uy, flagged down the Montero at the checkpoint, driven by Michael Lim who informed them that they were civilian assets of the NCRPO and carrying ‘shabu’ placed in a pink bag.
As Uy instructed Lim to park at the side of the road for verification, six other vehicles arrived and the occupants identified themselves as members of the RAIDSOTG of NCRPO.
Their team leader, who introduced himself as Insp. Johnny Garcia, informed Uy they were conducting a follow-up operation after a consummated buy-bust at a resort in San Rafael town and suspected that the Black Ford Ranger (vehicle of RID-SCU, PRO3) was their target.
The RAIDSOTG, NCRPO presented a coordination form for their surveillance but Uy noticed that the Mitsubishi Montero was not listed in the vehicles to be used in the operation.
Uy promptly informed Senior Supt. Romeo Caramat Jr., acting Bulacan PNP Director, who arrived in the area and ordered that the civilian assets and their vehicles be taken to Bulacan PPO for further verification.
While at the provincial headquarters, Senior Supt. Manuel Lukban, chief of RID- NCRPO and Chief Insp. Roberto Razon of RAID-SOTG arrived claiming full awareness of the operation of their men.
Lukban, in a phone interview said that the target drug dealers managed to elude arrest.
Meanwhile, Caramat said that while the RAIDSOTG-NCRPO operation was a legitimate one, the manner by which the NCRPO’s operatives carried out the procedure remains a question.
“If it was a buy-bust operation, the question is there was no arrested person. Walang arbor-arbor dito. Investigation is still on-going and if it is necessary we will file appropriate charges against the two civilian assets, including the 12 officers of the NCRPO,” Caramat said.
The assets and the 12 officers, including the vehicles, were released on Wednesday but Caramat said they will present themselves if needed in the investigation according to the agreement of the Bulacan PNP and NCRPO.