Man arrested in 2016 for alleged drug peddling at Closeup concert killed
MANILA, Philippines – A man arrested 3 years ago for allegedly being a member of a group that sold illegal party drugs at the Closeup Forever Summer concert, was shot and killed motorcycle-riding gunmen in Pasig City on Thursday night, May 2.
Pasig City police chief Colonel Rizalito Gapas, said Joshua Habalo, alias Josh, 26 years old, was killed on the spot.
Habalo gained notoriety when he was arrested by agents of the National Bureau of Investigation back in May 2016 for involvement with a group that sold ecstasy pills and other illegal party drugs during a concert at the Mall of Asia open-air grounds. Five people died in that event due to overdosing on drugs.
A police report said that at around 9 pm Thursday, Habalo was riding a motorcycle along Octagon Street in Barangay Dela Paz, Pasig, when two gunmen, also aboard motorbikes, followed him and fired their guns at him several times.
Investigators said the motorcycle of the suspects has no license plates.
The report added that after the shooting, the suspects fled towards Marcos Highway.
Gapas said: “Involved siya doon sa (He was involved in the) Closeup Forever Summer concert as he was allegedly peddling drugs. Kaso, hindi siya nakasuhan dahil hindi included as illegal drugs yung nakuha sa kanya,” (The case against him was dismissed because the what was seized from him during his arrest were not illegal.)
At that time, records showed the party drugs in Habalo's possession contained only synthetic cathinone, which is not listed as an illegal substance under Republic Act No. 9165 or the Comprehensive Drug Act.
According to a Rappler report on Habalo's arrest, he claimed that he used but did not sell the tablets in his possession during the May 22, 2016 concert.
Habalo also provided information on the groups which peddled drug in the concert. – Rappler.com