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Albayalde: Cocaine bricks hauled off PH waters may have been bound for Australia

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, February 27th, 2019

Cocaine bricks intercepted by police along the shores of Camarines Norte, Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte and Quezon from February 10 to 18, 2019

QUEZON CITY, Philippines — Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Oscar Albayalde said on Wednesday that the cocaine bricks recovered off the waters of Mindanao and Luzon in the past two weeks may have been part of a drug shipment bound for Australia.

Albayalde said they are now coordinating with their Australian counterparts to determine the signature of the cocaine slabs in order to confirm if these were among those being used by drug dependents in Australia.

“I talked with my Australian counterpart earlier. Parang nanggaling ito sa Pacific Ocean, pero hindi ito delivery sa Pilipinas (It looks like it came somewhere from the Pacific Ocean and these are not for delivery in the Philippines),” Albayalde told media after his meeting with Australian Federal Police officials.

Both the Philippine and Australian authorities believe that the contraband which floated to the eastern seaboard are connected to the cocaine bricks that were recovered in Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea in September last year because of its similar markings.

“Sometime in 2018, ‘yung Australian Federal Police assisted a police [operation in] Solomon Islands, meron silang nakuha na the same nature, the same package na cocaine,” Albayalde said.

The PNP Chief said Australian authorities had reported about the operations they conducted in three drug trafficking incidents in the Pacific Ocean in 2018.

First was in June where two suspects were arrested in Melbourne for conspiring to import and ship 300 kilograms of cocaine from Peru through the Pacific.

The second incident occurred in September in Siassi Island in Papua New Guinea, which yielded the arrest of six Hong Kong nationals and one Montenegro national following a high speed chase. The group allegedly dumped some of the cocaine slabs they were carrying in their boat during the chase but authorities were unable to find it after the operation.

Authorities also seized in September around 500 kilograms of cocaine from a yacht from Solomon Islands bound for Australia.

“Ito ‘yung nakuhang ship noon. Maliit lang kaya there’s a possibility na ito ay mga nag-capsized. Itong nakuha kasi ay yate, saka ang mga ganitong klase, way back in September, may nakuha sa Solomon island na around 500kg of cocaine,” Albayalde said.

“Meron din silang narecover with the help of Australian Police na the same package,” he added.

Since February 10, more than 100 kilograms of cocaine have been recovered on the shorelines or waters off Surigao del Sur, Surigao del Norte, Davao Oriental, Dinagat Island, Quezon, Aurora, Camarines Sur and Camarines Norte.

The PNP is awaiting results of the laboratory examinations of the seized cocaine samples they sent to Australian authorities. – Robie de Guzman (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

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Duterte: Colombian drug cartel now operating in PH

by Marje Pelayo   |   Posted on Tuesday, February 26th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte said a Colombian drug cartel is now operating in the country and is behind the floating cocaine blocks found in the country’s shorelines.

“We are facing a serious problem. Pumasok na ang cartel Medellin (ng) Colombia kaya nga marami na namang nakikitang cocaine,” the President said in a speech before barangay officials in Pasay City on Monday (February 25).

In two consecutive weeks, several blocks of cocaine valued at around P2-B pesos were found on the shores of Luzon, Eastern Visayas and Mindanao.

The President revealed that the said illegal drugs were being manufactured in old trawlers by international syndicates and attached with Global Positioning System (GPS) before being thrown into the sea where drug traffickers could recover.

He also noted that cocaine is the choice of wealthy drug users while shabu is actually the “commodity of the poor”.

“Madaling lutuin noon, madaling ibenta kasi mura, at marami ang market – ang tao,” the President said.

The President warned Filipinos working abroad to stay away from illegal drugs as there are countries who penalize drug cases with death.

Likewise, he reiterated his warning against those who do illegal drugs that his government will not be easy on them.

“Whether as a drug lord, wala akong pakialam kung galing kang China, galing kang Taiwan, galing kang Malaysia. ‘Pag pumunta kayo dito at ginawa ninyo ‘yan, papatayin ko talaga kayo. Kaya kayong mga Pilipino sa labas, ‘wag ninyong gawain ‘yan kasi papatayin din kayo doon. Do not commit the — committing crimes, your crimes in other countries. I cannot help you and I won’t help you,” he said.

“I will make this statement very, very clear. I promised you that at this time of our national life, it is the time during my time that it would be very, very dangerous for anybody to do drugs,” the President concluded. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Rosalie Coz)

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34 cocaine bricks found anew in the waters of Surigao del Sur

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Sunday, February 24th, 2019

Police authorities conduct an inventory of the drug haul along the shore of Brgy. Bungtod | Photo credit: PNP Caraga

Police authorities on Sunday (February 24) recovered 34 bricks of suspected cocaine at around 6:30 AM at Purok Santan, Brgy Bungtod, Tandag City, Surigao del Sur.

The contraband was seen by two fishermen, identified as Ronnie Navales and Ryan Apelo, along the seawaters of Surigao del Sur.

Navales and Apelo promptly reported their discovery to the Surigao del Sur Police Provincial Office headed by PSSupt Francisco D. Dungo.

The inventory was conducted by Police Regional Office-13 (PRO 13) regional director, PCSupt Gilberto DC Cruz and Surigao del Sur Crime Laboratory along the shore of Brgy. Bungtod in the presence of Mayor Alexander Pimentel of Tandag City.

The bricks were printed with a dollar sign similar to those recovered in Dinagat Island Province.

Police credit the recovery to the information campaign initiated by RD PRO13 that urged fisherfolks to immediately report any suspicious bricks seen in seawaters. Authorities are offering to reward each surrendered block of cocaine with a sack of rice.

The contraband was brought to PRO 13 headquarter for further examination by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency-13 and proper disposition. — UNTV News and Rescue

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Discovered cocaine in eastern seaboard, not a diversionary tactic —Albayalde

by admin   |   Posted on Wednesday, February 20th, 2019

Blocks of cocaine intercepted by authorities along the shores of Camarines Norte, Dinagat Islands, Surigao del Norte and Quezon

QUEZON CITY, Philippines — PNP Chief Police Director General Oscar Albayalde asserts that the cocaine blocks that were dumped and discovered in the eastern seaboard of the country is not a diversionary tactic.

The PNP Chief said the said blocks of cocaine were too expensive to just be thrown into the sea and be used as a diversionary tactic.

Albayalde added, “yung cocaine ay hindi masyadong pina-patronize dito sa Pilipinas [Cocaine is not popularly patronized in the Philippines], so I don’t see any diversionary tactics as of this time.”

This started when a student saw a block of cocaine along the coastline of Perez, Quezon on Tuesday (February 19).

The government has already recorded more than 90 kilos of cocaine valued at around half a billion pesos, all from what were recovered in Surigao del Norte, Dinagat Island, Camarines Norte and Quezon Province. — Maris Federez (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

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