CEBU CITY – Mayor Edgardo Labella on Monday commended the Cebu City Police Office for scoring big in the anti-drug campaign that led to the arrest of three drug mules allegedly hired by a national penitentiary inmate to transport illegal drug supply to Central Visayas provinces.
“I commend the Police Regional Office 7 with Gen. Albert Ignatius Ferro as regional director and CCPO Director Josefino Ligan for this accomplishment. Even if we are still fighting the invisible enemy, Cebu City will not stop in its fight against illegal drugs,” Labella said in a statement.
Ligan, in a press briefing on Monday, said that Rolando Romeo, 32, his brother Edward, 24, and Calvin Valdez, 42, all residents of Don Andres Abellana Extension in Guadalupe village here, were arrested in a sting operation on Sunday at the nearby Sitio Tipolo Bridge.
Seized from the trio were seven kilos of suspected shabu worth PHP47.6 million which, Ligan said, were transported from Manila to Cebu via Negros Occidental’s San Carlos City port. He said the illegal drugs were packed in Chinese tea bags.
The police said Rolando allegedly picked up the illegal drugs from a ship from San Carlos City that docked at the Toledo City port over the weekend.
“They are the new recruits of the Rolando Ygot group. They closed the transactions in the National Bilibid Prison but the drugs were sourced in Manila,” Ligan said in Cebuano, dismissing reports that the contraband originated from a jail where Ygot is serving sentence.
The CCPO chief said the Romeo brothers and Valdez, owner of the car used to transport the seized illegal drugs, were hired by Ygot’s group through a “middle man” and received instructions on a “need-to-know basis”.
He lamented that while the authorities are busy manning quarantine control points amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic, the syndicate still continues its illicit activities using couriers who had no previous drug records.
“They can even transport 20 kilos (of illegal drugs) from Manila to the Visayas,” Ligan added.
The suspects were arrested after two months of surveillance but the police found out that they were able to dispose nine kilos of shabu last April when Cebu and neighboring provinces were placed under enhanced community quarantine.
Also on Monday, the police filed raps against the three suspects for violation of Section 5 of Republic Act 9165, the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002. (PNA)