THE Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency on Friday expressed frustration over the “new players” in the illegal drug trade after a drug bust in Mandaluyong City yielded suspects who said the drug suppliers were from the New Bilibid Prison.
“There are new players, and the number of dealers is growing instead of declining,” PDEA Director General Aaron Aquino said.
In other developments:
* Philippine National Police Chief Ronald dela Rosa said Friday that policemen were demanding money from drug suspects to
• Solicitor General Jose Calida has refused to comply with the Supreme Court’s order to provide a full documentation of the more than 3,000 deaths that resulted during police operations in the war on drugs.
He asked the high court to recall the order in a Motion for Reconsideration dated Dec. 18.
The order was issued during the oral arguments in December on the petitions seeking to declare drug war circulars unconstitutional.
• PDEA seized ecstasy in liquid and tablet form and cocaine in a buy-bust operation in a condominium in Mandaluyong City.
Aquino identified the suspected ecstasy and cocaine retailer and supplier as Lester Almalbez, 35, of Unit 410 Princeville Condominium, Mandaluyong City, and Herald Peñaflor, 26, an alleged drug supplier.
• One of the accused in the case involving the P6.4-billion shabu shipment that slipped past the Bureau of Customs in May last year has allegedly offered a P10-million bribe to an immigration officer in an attempt to leave the country.
Bureau of Immigration port operations division chief Marc Red Mariñas said Friday that businessman Dong Yi Shen alias Kenneth Dong attempted to bribe an Immigration officer assigned at a provincial airport last Monday.
Mariñas said he was told that the Immigration officer, whom he did not identify, declined the offer and immediately reported the incident to Immigration officials.
Aquino said Friday’s drug bust was the fifth in which the arrested suspects claimed that the illegal drug suppliers were from the national penitentiary.
“We don’t know these suppliers and that’s frustrating,” Aquino said.
“As I said, even if policemen and PDEA agents break their backs to clear a village of drugs, if tons more come in then it’s useless.
Asked about a possible solution to the problem, Aquino suggested an overhaul in the system within the national penitentiary.
“I don’t know, but the only solution I see is to destroy the whole NBP and transfer it to an ideal facility,” he said.
Aquino’s comments came even as the Philippine National Police’s return to the government’s campaign against illegal drugs loomed.