By John Unson
Anti-narcotics agents have seized P5.3 million worth of shabu from a former mayor, an incumbent barangay councilor, and a 63-year-old woman who fell in separate operations Friday.
The first to fall from the three stings laid by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) was Jaher Guiapal, arrested after selling P136,000 worth of shabu, or methamphetamine hydrochloride, to plainclothes PDEA operatives in the town proper of Buluan in Maguindanao.
Juvenal Azurin, director of PDEA-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, said Guiapal, an incumbent barangay official in Buluan, did not resist arrest when agents cuffed him after the tradeoff.
“He is a high value target. We are thankful to vigilant residents of Buluan and his relatives who helped us entrap him,” Azurin said.
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Personnel of the Maguindanao provincial police and the Army’s 40th Infantry Battalion helped carry out the operation on Friday morning that resulted in the arrest of Guiapal, 33.
PDEA-BARMM agents arrested eight hours later a 65-year-old woman, Sitti Omar Luman, after turning over P5.1 million worth of shabu to non-uniformed subordinates of Azurin along Notre Dame Avenue, a busy thoroughfare in Cotabato City.
“She has companions in a car that sped away when they noticed our agents surround her after turning over the illegal merchandise to buyers disguised as drug dependents,” Azurin said.
Both Guiapal and Luman shall face charges for the violation of Republic Act 9165, or the Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, using the shabu confiscated from them as evidence.
Meanwhile, agents in PDEA in Region 10 also arrested on the same day Abdul Manamparan II, former mayor of Nunangan town in Lanao del Sur.
The agents had seized from Manamparan some P136,000 worth of shabu in his residence in Xavier Estates in Upper Balulang area in Cagayan de Oro City.
In a statement, the regional office of PDEA-10 said agents, assisted by the Cagayan de Oro City police office, found the shabu inside the former mayor’s house during a search following tips by informants in his hometown and neighbors in Upper Balulang.
The 37-year-old Manamparan, scion of a big political clan in Nunangan, is now in the custody of PDEA-10.