PDEA to file raps over multi-billion shabu smuggling

MANILA The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) will file a criminal complaint before the Department of Justice (DOJ) against those involved in the smuggling of the four magnetic lifters found in a warehouse in Cavite last August.

PDEA Director General Aaron Aquino estimated that these four magnetic lifters contained approximately 1,000 kilos or a ton of shabu with an estimated value of PHP6.8 billion.

We will file the case on Thursday at 10 a.m. at the Department of Justice so we are inviting all media to be there when we file the case against those who are involved in illegal drugs. Aquino told reporters in a press conference on Wednesday.

Actually we will be having a meeting this afternoon with the group and finalize it. We will have a very brief press conference during the time we file the case at the DOJ. We will file charges against a lot of persons," he added.

Aquino revealed that after Thursday's filing of the case, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) will also file cases on the matter in the coming days.

Earlier, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra has ordered the NBI to conduct a parallel probe, in connection with the recent discovery of four magnetic lifters used in shabu smuggling in General Mariano Alvarez, Cavite.

Guevarra said he has directed NBI director Gierran to form a team of agents to investigate and determine how the contraband, reportedly contained in the seized magnetic lifters in Cavite, was successfully smuggled.

In his order, Guevarra specifically directed the NBI to trace how the latest shabu shipment was able to pass through the Bureau of Customs (BOC) and identify the officials and personalities responsible for it.

If warranted, the NBI will file charges against those who will be found criminally liable for the drug smuggling.

According to Aquino, former PDEA Deputy Director General Ismael Fajardo reportedly went in hiding after being accused of involvement in the multi-billion-peso smuggling case being probed by Congress.

Well the last time that I talked to him (Fajardo) is a month or two months ago and then he resigned from PDEA effective November 30 this year. And then, he was implicated in magnetic lifters maybe a week after that, he filed a leave and his leave continues, the PDEA Chief said.

Aquino said he asked Fajardo to attend in the probe but the latter didn't pick up his calls.

I think last month, nagbago na rin sya ng (he changed his) cellphone number so nobody knows exactly. We are trying to ask his son and the wife but ang sabi sa PDEA, hindi daw nila kung alam si Fajardo (but according to what I heard in PDEA, they don't know where Fajardo is), Aquino said. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency

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