Aggressive but ‘bloodless’ operation is the new face of drug war, Azurin says

Published October 11, 2022, 8:12 AM

by Aaron Recuenco 

The bloodless operations that led to the confiscation of more than P6.7 billion worth of shabu in Manila over the weekend is the new face of the drug war, Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Rodolfo Azurin, Jr., said.

Despite the large quantity of the illegal drugs seized, Azurin said no arrested suspects were hurt in the conduct of three separate operations that started in Tondo, Manila and ended in Pasig City.

“Arrests were made, but nobody was hurt in this classic, by-the-book police operation,” said Azurin.

“Ladies and gentlemen, this is the new face of the anti-illegal drugs campaign of the police that is at the fore of the national strategy against the country’s drug problem,” he stressed.

PNP chief Gen. Rodolfo Azurin, Jr.

It started with a buy-bust operation in Tondo where Ney Atadero was arrested on Saturday afternoon.

Police Brig. Gen. Narciso Domingo, director of the PNP Drug Enforcement Group (PDEG), said the arrest led them to a lending company office in Sta. Cruz, Manila where 990 kilograms of shabu were seized. The street value, according to the police, is P6.7 billion.

The operation in Sta. Cruz, Manila led to the discovery of the documents linking Police Master Sgt. Rodolfo Mayo, Jr. in the illegal drugs trade. Mayo was an intelligence officer of the PDEG in Metro Manila at the time of his arrest.

He was then arrested in a follow-up operation in Quiapo, Manila early morning of Oct. 9. PDEG operatives seized two kilos of shabu from him.

Eight more people were arrested in a follow-up operation in Rosario, Pasig City, including a suspected big-time drug trafficker whose house in Cebu was subjected to confiscation by the Anti-Money Laundering Council for alleged involvement in illegal drugs.

Azurin said all those arrested were already slapped with appropriate criminal charges, including the arrested policemen who was tagged as owner of the lending company where the 990 kilos of shabu were seized.

“More than the amount of drugs confiscated, the important thing is we have taken off the streets millions of dosage units of toxic chemicals in this Shabu concoction that could have destroyed so many young and productive Filipino lives,” said Azurin.

“We are hitting hard on the sources of these dangerous contraband to disrupt or break the supply chain. At the same time, we are pursuing the demand reduction strategy with renewed vigor by promoting drug abuse awareness prevention and resistance education,” he added.

The drug war in the past six years has been the subject of criticisms both local and abroad due to allegations of human rights violations and extra-judicial killings–aside from reports of drug war collaterals that include children killed in crossfires.

Over 6,000 alleged drug pushers and users were killed in police operations aside from thousands more who were killed by drug war-inspired vigilante groups. On the other hand, more than 150 policemen were either charged or facing criminal cases for drug war-related cases.

Illegal drugs problems in the country, however, remain and authorities continue to confiscate tons of shabu.

President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. vowed to continue the drug war but with a different approach.

 
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