1 ton of shabu got away? Verify first, says PNP
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) still does not completely believe that an estimated 1,000-kilogram (kg) shabu shipment was able to be smuggled into the country.
In a press briefing on Monday, August 13, PNP chief Director General Oscar Albayalde said there was still no way to confirm the amount of illegal drugs that got away because nobody saw it.
"'Yung sinabi ng director ng PDEA (Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency), that has to be validated kung gaano talaga karami, kung meron mang lumusot.... Because after ma-recover 'yung mga magnetic na lifters na 'yun, that has to be still validated because as of this time nakita kasi 'yun wala nang laman," Albayalde said.
(What the PDEA director is saying has to be validated, how much got away, and if drugs really got through.... Because after the magnetic lifters were recovered, there was no longer anything inside, so the information on the drugs still needs to be validated.)
On August 10, the PDEA and PNP presented magnetic lifters in a General Mariano Alvarez warehouse similar to the containers intercepted at the Manila International Container Terminal which carried 500 kg of shabu (methamphetamine). The ones found in the warehouse, however, were already empty.
Miscommunication? Further distancing themselves from PDEA's estimate, PNP Calabarzon director Chief Superintendent Edward Carranza said in the Monday briefing that they only provided CCTV footage of vehicles transferring the lifters.
"As to the estimate kung ilan 'yung ando'n, it was PDEA that made that theory, na gano'n kalaki 'yung volume based do'n sa puwedeng ikarga sa loob ng lifter," Carranza said.
(As to the estimate how much was in there, it was PDEA that made that theory, that the volume was that large based on what could be stored inside the lifter.)
Carranza's pronouncement came despite him directly sitting at the left of Aquino when the PDEA chief made the statement in their joint press briefing, saying, "As per PDEA, we estimated that these 4 magnetic lifters contained approximately 1,000 kg of shabu with an estimated value of P6.8 billion."
According to the PDEA, they verified that the containers held shabu by having their narcotics-tracking dogs sniff them and by finding out that the containers, both the filled and the empty, all passed through the MICT. Whether all containers belonged to the same shipment has yet to be established.
In any case, Albayalde said they are cooperating with PDEA to track down the supposed illegal drugs. The PDEA, after all, is the country's lead anti-drug agency.
"On our part, kailangan nating hanapin 'yan, kung totoong nakalusot na 'yan (We need to look for that if ever it's true that it slipped through us)," the PNP chief said. – Rappler.com