PDEA in Bicol intensifies anti-drug campaign

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LEGAZPI CITY (13-Oct-2012/PNA) – Adjudged as the second best performer in the first-half of the year in the national evaluation of anti-narcotics campaign, the award added more vigor to the operatives of Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) regional office here to further give their best in curbing the illegal drug trade.

They intensified their buy bust operations and served more search and arrest warrants which resulted to the arrest of some key members of the local drug syndicates.

Among them was Roland Literal who was nabbed after police operatives engaged his armed bodyguards in a car chase and gun battle in Sabang. PDEA agent Arnel Estrellado was seriously wounded during the firefight.

His brother, Renan, was also arrested and charged in court for possession and sale of shabu.

Another suspect Christian Vargas, was arrested at the Dream Inn Hotel and Café, also in Sabang, three days after Joven Barcelon was arrested in his residence at the port village of Binanuahan.

During the first six months of 2012 PDEA arrested 147 persons engaged in drug of which; 70 pushers, 59 in possessors, nine users, four drug den maintainers, two couriers and one cohort.

“What is crucial for us is keeping the ‘integrity of evidence’ to seal a conviction of every suspect we bring to courts,” PDEA Bicol Dir. Archie Grande said.

Lawyer Teodoro Caparroso, PDEA-Bicol legal officer assured effective procedures to avoid drug cases being dismissed in courts due to technicalities have been laid out and strictly followed.

“This bring about a high conviction rate higher than the National Capital Region’s rating,” Caparroso said.

Naga City has put up its local Dangerous Drugs Council while most LGUs strengthen budget and manpower support to anti-drug abuse councils in cities (CADAC), Municipalities (MADAC), and barangays (BADAC).

In the semi-annual report of the regional office of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP), there were 372 inmates on drug-related cases are in at least 22 city, municipal, and district jails across the region of which 32 were women.

“These concerted efforts by PDEA, anti-drug abuse councils, BJMP, the police and concerned citizens are not focused on any rewards or recognitions in return but we are simply doing our responsibility, expected and hoped for by present and future generations to be protected from the evils illegal drugs can bring about,” Grande added. (PNA)

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