Claims vs Manila 'drug queen' still only 'speculation' – PDEA

MANILA, Philippines – After publicly accusing her of being a "drug queen," the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) admitted on Thursday, October 3, that they still did not have enough evidence to file a drug case against Guia Gomez Castro.

During the Senate hearing on drug recycling in law enforcement agencies, Senator Richard Gordon asked law enforcers, "'Pag bumalik ba 'yan dito (Should she return), you can file a case against her, or it's all speculative?"

"Speculative, Sir. Walang matatag na ebidensya (there is no strong evidence) to file a case against her," said PDEA chief Director General Aaron Aquino. 

Who is the drug queen? It was Aquino himself who told senators in September of the alleged drug operation of Castro, a barangay chairman in Sampaloc, Manila. She had left the country, forcing her barangay hall to get the top village councilor as her replacement.

Aquino said that Castro purchased drugs recycled by cops from anti-illegal drugs operations. Days later, the Manila Police District (MPD) revealed her name, triggering a manhunt for her.

The Department of Justice had issued an immigration lookout bulletin on Castro, and successfully asked the United States to cancel her passport so she could be forced to return to the Philippines.

She has arrest warrants: Based on records obtained and earlier presented by the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO), at least 3 courts had issued arrest warrants against Castro: one for a drug case, and two for alleged violation of the bouncing checks law.

Aquino said on Thursday that the drug case against Castro had already been "dismissed."

Because of this, Gordon lamented that all the media noise could lead to nothing. "Nasa diyaryo, tapos 'pag bumalik dito, tatawanan pa tayo niyan. 'Sige mag-file kayo ng case, wala naman kayong kaso sa akin eh,'" he said

(It's all on the papers and yet when she returns, she will laugh at us saying, "Go file a case, you don't have the evidence.") – Rappler.com

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers security, crime, and the city of Manila for Rappler. He was chosen as a Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.

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