MANILA Immigration officers intercepted a member of a big-time Chinese drug syndicate while attempting to flee the country at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
In his report to Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente Tuesday, BI port operations division chief Grifton Medina said 29-year-old Hong Liangyi was stopped at the NAIA Terminal 3 departure area on December 8 before he could board a flight to Istanbul, Turkey en route to his final destination in Tehran, Iran.
He was barred from leaving after immigration officers found that he is in the bureau's hold departure list and is the subject of an arrest warrant due to criminal cases for illegal drugs that were filed against him before the courts in Cavite and Batangas.
Authorities have identified him (Hong) as a leading member of the Dragon Wu International Syndicate allegedly responsible for the production and distribution of illegal drugs in the country, Medina said in a statement.
The suspect was already turned over to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Administration (PDEA).
In January, Hong and two other Chinese drug suspects were issued a hold departure order (HDO) by the Tagaytay City Regional Trial Court (RTC) where the three foreigners are respondents in a pending criminal case.
Hong and 13 other drug suspects are also facing a separate drug case before the Rosario, Batangas RTC which issued a warrant for their arrest in June last year. He was then considered at large.
Law enforcement agencies have tagged the Dragon Wu syndicate as behind the operations of several shabu laboratories that were discovered and raided in several places of the country.
Among these was the shabu laboratory that PDEA agents discovered inside a warehouse at a farm in Ibaan, Batangas last year and which resulted in the arrest of four Chinese suspects and four of their Filipino accomplices.
The syndicate was also pinpointed as the operator of a clandestine ecstasy laboratory that was raided in Malabon City also in April 2018.
According to PDEA, Dragon Wu traces its roots to the so-called "Golden Triangle area which is notorious for being the world's foremost drug-producing region. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency