5 notorious drug users nabbed inside Baguio drug den

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BAGUIO CITY  – Five notorious drug personalities, including the drug maintainers and visitors, were successfully arrested by anti-narcotics agents of the Cordillera office of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA-CAR) that resulted to the dismantling of the said den located at Lower Quirino Hill here Saturday night.

Armed with a search warrant issued by Judge Reynaldo Alhambra of the Regional Trial Court Branch 53, Manila, operatives of PDEA-CAR swooped on a drug den that resulted to the confiscation of 1,016.2317 grams of marijuana dried leaves, six sachets of methamphetamine hydrochloride weighing 3.1072 grams and 18 tablets of diazepam weighing 3.0637 grams.

Gil Castro, PDEA-CAR assistant regional director, identified the arrested drug personalities during the operation as  Annabell Del Rosario Atienza, 41, micro financing officer and a resident of Lower Quirino Hill, Baguio City and her common-law husband Robert Manalili David, 26, single, entertainer and a resident of Lower Quirino Hill, Baguio City.  PDEA agents also collared Anthony Ringor Castillo, 37, single and a resident of General Lim, Baguio City; Joel Mijica Espina, 33, single, entertainer and a resident of Lower Pinget, Baguio City and Reymon Yasis Sarmiento, 31, single, taxi driver and a resident of Pinsao Proper, Baguio City.

Castro disclosed the cohabiting Atienza and David were the drug den maintainers and members of a notorious drug group operating in Baguio City and La Trinidad, Benguet.  Castillo is also a member of another drug group that also operates in Baguio City and La Trinidad, Benguet while Espina and Sarmiento were visitors of the drug den.

Aside from the dangerous drugs, the PDEA operatives were able to seize several drug paraphernalia such as improvised pipes and filters, lighters, improvised totters, scissors, aluminum foils, butane burners, a shisha and a digital weighing scale.

The suspects, who are now detained at the Baguio City Jail, are now facing cases for violation of Republic Act No. 9165 otherwise known as the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.0

“We will continue pursuing our unrelenting and uncompromising anti-drug operations regionwide in order to curb the drug menace that affect today’s youth, especially those who are exposed to the use of illegal drugs, so that the region will become drug free in the future,” Castro stressed.

Aside from marijuana which is popularly produced in remote villages of the Cordillera, Castro said PDEA agents are also closely watching the trade of various forms of illegal drugs like shabu and other high profile drugs that are being traded in the urban areas of the region.

By Dexter A. See

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