P163-M shabu packed in tea bags seized in Santa Ana, Manila

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Wednesday, June 13, seized around 24 kilograms of shabu (methamphetamine) in the Santa Ana district in Manila.

Valued at around P163 million, the illegal drugs packed in golden plastic tea bags were seized from the suspects, 61-year-old Ruby Calabio and her 26-year-old son, Ian Akira Calabio.

Police obtained the packed drugs through a buy-bust operation. The tea bags were allegedly found inside the Calabio home, stored inside a silver luggage bag.

Police showed the seized drugs to the media in Camp Crame. Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Officer-in-Charge Eduardo Año led the presentation.

Reading the accomplishment report, Año said the drugs were seized by Caloocan City cops, acting on a lead obtained from their area.

WATCH: DILG OIC Año and PNP chief Oscar Albayalde inspect 24 kilograms of methamphetamine (shabu) seized in Manila. pic.twitter.com/DTxHqJc7yV — Rambo Talabong (@rambotalabong) June 13, 2018

Smuggled from China? According to PNP chief Director General Oscar Albayalde, police are investigating whether the stash was smuggled into the country or is part of a drugs cache in Manila. 

"There is [a] big indication that this is really smuggled, with the packaging and all, you can see it. So what we are establishing here is was this smuggled or was this already stocked here? Because for all you know, there are more stocked here," Albayalde said in a mix of English and Filipino.

Based on the inscriptions of the glossy bags, Albayalde said the illegal drugs came from China, but police have yet to verify this. (READ: Calida on drug smuggling in PH: ‘We cannot police an archipelago’)

The top cop added that the seized shabu was of "high-grade" quality. – 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.