P79 million worth of cocaine found off Isabela seas

TUGUEGARAO CITY, Philippines – About P79 million worth of cocaine was found floating in the seas of Isabela province, authorities confirmed on Tuesday night, February 6.

In a joint press conference, the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in Cagayan Valley region said a blue container was found floating near Barangay Dipudo in Divilacan, Isabela.

The container was later found to be holding 18 tightly packed plastic bags of cocaine.

Police regional director Chief Superintendent Jose Mario Espino said the recovered items were similar to the ones police found in Matnog, Sorsogon this January.

The packs were sealed-tight with the same “R” markings and weighed a total of 18 kilograms, PDEA said.

Divilacan Police chief Senior Inspector Jonathan Ramos said the container was found by local fishermen in Barangay Dipudo at around 2:00 pm on Monday, February 5. Police immediately flew to PRO2’s crime lab for examination on Tuesday.

The PDEA suspects the shipment was part of a previously-intercepted cargo vessel travelling to Hong Kong from South America. The container is said to have been floating since 2010.

Meanwhile, Espino said the packs of cocaine are “dangerous,” considering the possible chemical reactions that occurred in its long time afloat the sea.

He added that similar containers may still be floating at sea, asking the public in coastal towns to report to the police if they find similar items. – Rappler.com