Suspect Salahudin Takao Kendayo
MANILA, Philippines — A man was arrested by agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) for selling drugs inside a mall in Manila.
The suspect who hails from Cotabato was identified as Salahudin Tokao Kendayo.
Authorities conducted the buy-bust operation at the mall’s parking area where Kendayo was eventually arrested.
Five sachets of suspected shabu worth P3.4 million were confiscated from the suspect.
“Ang source niya ng drugs ay nanggaling pa sa Alabang and we are still verifying sa initial investigation namin na connected siya sa malaking grupo sa Mindanao na nagbabagsak din hindi lang sa Mindanao but dito sa Metro Manila,” said PDEA team leader operation Gregor Bugalin.
(He sources his drugs from Alabang and we are still verifying our initial investigation that he is connected to a bigger group in Mindanao that supplies drugs not only in Mindanao but also in Metro Manila.)
The suspect said he was just told to transport the drugs by his cousin who is an inmate at the Manila City Jail.
“Pumayag po ako kasi bago lang ako sa Manila tapos yun nga, wala pa akong mahanap na trabaho. Tumawag yung pinsan ko. Inutusan ako bibigyan daw ako ng 5,000,” said the suspect.
(I agreed to it because I’m new in Manila and I couldn’t find a job. My cousin called me up and said he’ll pay me 5,000 for the delivery.)
PDEA said the suspect had been under surveillance for two weeks.
A tip from an informant led to the discovery of the illegal operation Kendayo’s illegal operations.
“The suspect was previously arrested by the PNP in Tondo, Manila for violation of Section 11 Article 2 of RA 9165. Last May 22 he was released on bail,” said Bugalin.
Kendayo expressed regret over his decision to act as a drug mule.
“Natakot din po pero naisip ko sabi ko magkakapera na ko. Hindi ko na naisip na ikakasira pala ng buhay ko,” he said.
(I was also afraid to do it but thought of the money I would be receiving. It never occurred to me that it will ruin my life.)
The suspect is currently detained at PDEA headquarters and will be facing charges for violating the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002. — Victor Cosare