By Jeffrey Damicog
The Department of Justice (DOJ) intends to seek precautionary hold departure orders (PHDO) against the co-respondents of alleged Chinese drug lord Jacky Co to prevent them from leaving the country and face the complaints against them concerning the P1.8 billion shipment of narcotics.
Acting Prosecutor General Richard Anthony Fadullon explained the need to ask from a court to issue PHDOs considering that Co is no longer in the Philippines.
“The fact that one of them is reportedly out of the country strengthens the possibility these people will abscond, so justifiable ang paghingi ng PHDO (to ask for PHDO),” Fadullon said Saturday (June 1).
A PHDO is issued by a court against persons who are undergoing preliminary investigations before a prosecutor over complaints filed against them.
It is different from a HDO which is issued only once charges have been filed in court.
Just this Friday, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) filed before the DOJ criminal complaints against Xu Zhi Jian alias Jacky Co and 16 others for violation of Section 4 (Importation of Dangerous Drugs), in relation to Section 31 (Additional Penal ty if Offender is an Alien) of Republic Act.A. No. 9165, the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, as amended by R.A. No. 10640.
The 16 co-respondents of Co are Dong An Dong, Julie Hao Gamboa, Fe Tamayosa, Alvin Bautista, Jane Abello Castillo, Carlo Dale T. Zueta, Abraham G. Torecampo, Arwin P. Caparros, Leonardo S. Su caldito, and Mark Leo D. Magpayo, Brian Pabilona, Meldy Sayson, Rhea Tolosa, Edgardo Dominado, Jerry Siguenza, and Debbie Joy Aceron.
The officers and directors of Wealth Lotus Empire Corporation and Fortuneyield Cargo Services are also accused of importation of in relation to Section 30 (Criminal Liability of Of ficers of Partnerships, Corporations, Associations or other Juridical Entities) of R.A. No. 9165 as amended by R.A. No. 10640.
Fadullon said a prosecutor will be assigned to handle the complaints filed by the PDEA and conduct a preliminary investigation to determine if there is probable cause to file charges in court.
On March 22, joint government operatives led by the PDEA acted on a tip from their counterparts from Vietnam conducted an interdiction operation at Manila International Container Port – Container Freight Station 3 (MICP-CFS3).
The operation resulted in the confiscation of 276,344.82 grams of shabu concealed in sacks of plastic resin worth P1,876,800,000.