P12.5-M 'illegal drugs' seized from Jan. to April in N. Oriental

DUMAGUETE CITY -- The Philippine National Police (PNP) in Negros Oriental seized more than P12 million worth of suspected "illegal drugs", during the first four months of this year.

Records at the Negros Oriental PNP Provincial Office (NORPPO), headed by Senior Superintendent Henry Biñas, showed the total value of the confiscated illegal drugs mostly alleged methamphetamine hydrochloride or "shabu" and "marijuana" at P12,511,254 was based on the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) pricing.

From January to April this year, the NORPPO reported a total of 90 anti-illegal drugs operations conducted in the province, with 99 pushers and 21 users arrested.

A total of 139 cases for violations of the Dangerous Drugs Act were filed against these suspects in the same period.

The volume of suspected "shabu" seized for the first four months of this year totaled 1,246.186 grams, with marijuana leaves totaling 7.72 grams and six marijuana cigarettes also confiscated.

Biñas reiterated that under "Oplan Double Barrel" reloaded, the PNP in the province shifted its concentration to relentless anti-illegal drugs operations from "Oplan Tokhang" that had focused on voluntary surrender of drug pushers and drug users.

During the day-long Provincial Peace Symposium held Tuesday, Superintendent Carlos Lacuesta, deputy provincial police director for operations, disclosed that the NORPPO’s significant accomplishment for April was the neutralization of a “high value target.”

Lacuesta identified the suspect as Rey Antonio Benzon Saga, killed in a shootout with police operatives last April 9 at Sitio Matangad, San Jose village in Tanjay City, Negros Oriental.

Seized from Saga were 15.13 grams of shabu, with an estimated DDB value of P151,300 and a Caliber .38 Smith and Wesson revolver with three rounds of ammunition. (PNA)