Sinaloa drug cartel suspect files motion for bail

MANILA, Philippines – A Mexican national believed to be an official of the Sinaloa drug cartel filed a motion of application for bail before the Makati Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 63 on Thursday, September 3.

Lawyer William delos Santos filed an urgent motion of application for bail for his client Horacio Hernandez Herrera, who was arrested on January by agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and the Philippine National Police Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operations Task Force (PNP-AIDSOTF) during a buy-bust operation in Makati.

Herrera was arrested following the sale of P12 million worth of cocaine to PNP-AIDSOTF undercover agents in front of a hotel along Makati Avenue.

He was charged by the Makati RTC Branch 63 for violating the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act on June 5.

On Thursday, Presiding Judge Tranquil Salvador Jr gave the prosecution, represented by lawyer and assistant state prosecutor Juan Pedro Navera, 10 days to examine Herrera’s motion.

According to authorities, Herrera is supposedly the “number 3 or 4 in the [Sinaloa] cartel’s hierarchy,” though the accused has denied the claim.

The Sinaloa drug cartel is the world’s most powerful drug trafficking, money laundering, and organized crime ring operating in the United States, Australia, Europe, West Africa, the Philippines, and other Asian countries.

Documentary evidence

During Thursday’s pre-trial, the prosecution submitted several documentary evidence for the Makati RTC Branch 63 to identify and mark.

The documents include an affidavit of Intelligence Officer 1 Errold E. Dayrit, the poseur buyer during the buy-bust operation, joint affidavit of arrest of the investigators, inventory of the seized drugs, laboratory and medical examination requests, among others.

The defense also submitted evidence, including Herrera’s counter affidavit, his passport, and the results of drug tests on his urine.

According to court interpreter III Antonette Ona, the other seized pieces of evidence for the case are still under the PDEA’s custody, prompting a continuance of the pre-trial on October 1.

The court will start hearing Herrera’s case on October 28, when Dayrit is set to give his testimony. – Rappler.com

Mara Cepeda

Mara Cepeda writes about politics and women’s rights for Rappler. She covers the House of Representatives and the Office of the Vice President. Got tips? Send her an email at mara.cepeda@rappler.com or shoot her a tweet @maracepeda.

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