MANILA, Philippines – After police seized P1.125 billion worth of liquid methamphetamine or shabu during a raid on a house in Santo Domingo, Angeles City, Pampanga, entertainment personality Robin Padilla has expressed concern about news reports mentioning his name as a former owner of the property.
On Instagram, Padilla mentioned two news outlets: “Kapag napatunayan na totoo ang sinabi ng Inquirer at ng GMA-7 patungkol sa akin, hihilingin ko kay Mayor Duterte na ako ang unang bitayin nya sa kanyang pag-upo bilang Pangulo.”
(If what Inquirer and GMA-7 have been saying is proven true, I request that Mayor [and President-elect Rodrigo] Duterte execute me first upon sitting as president.)
Padilla also issued an official statement through his lawyers Atty Rudolf Philip B Jurado and Leonard Peejay V Jurado, urging that news articles “should stop mentioning the name of our client along with the reported one billion pesos worth of seized liquid shabu, because our client has no connection, whatsoever, with the present owner of the property where the liquid shabu was supposedly seized or to the alleged illegal drug manufacturer.” (READ: P1.125B worth of liquid meth seized in latest raid)
A report from Emil Sumangil on GMA 7’s Balitanghali, now currently unavailable online, was quoted by PEP to say: “Ang ni-raid na property na ito diumano ay dating pag-aari ng aktor diumano na si Robin Padilla. (The property that was raided is allegedly a former property of actor Robin Padilla).”
Another from the Philippine Daily Inquirer also cited Sumangil’s report as seen in Padilla’s screenshots on Instagram, but now omitted it to instead say: “The house, owned by a lawyer, was once rented by an actor.”
Authorities found around 45 gallons of liquid shabu in the Pampanga property after serving a search warrant against Taiwanese Lin Chin Kuan.
The statement clarified that the Taiwanese national identified in the raid started renting the property only a year ago and that Padilla had sold it 18 years ago. “As such, there are no logical reasons why our client’s name needs to be mentioned in any of the reports concerning the alleged seizure of liquid shabu,” it continued.
“Neither our client nor the act of mentioning his name cannot, in any way, [assist] in the investigation of the current whereabouts of the illegal drug manufacturer. The reports’ only concern should have been the identity of the Taiwanese illegal drug manufacturer or, at the very least, the present owner thereof who has authority to allow the supposed illegal drug manufacturer to lease the property.”
As Padilla is an actor and commercial endorser, the statement also said that the “defamatory matter” as become a “growing concern to our client, his children and his pregnant wife, all of whom have now been hounded by various calls asking about our client’s supposed relationship with the alleged illegal drug manufacturer.”
Police did not find anyone in the house when they arrived, saying that the suspects had fled in a hurry as the air conditioners were still on.
Aside from the liquid shabu, 4 freezers, various hydrogen tanks, and more or less 2 kilograms of white crystalline substance suspected to be shabu were found.
The Philippine National Police-Anti-Illegal Drugs Group (PNP-AIDG), as assisted by some members of the Taiwan anti-illegal drugs operative, had been trailing a Taiwanese syndicate operating in the Philippines. Their surveillance operations led them to Angeles City. – with reports from Jun A. Malig, Randy V. Datu, and Marchel P. Espina/Rappler.com
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