By LITO RULONA
AUTHORITIES arrested 16 suspected drug peddlers and users, and confiscated over P1 million worth of suspected shabu from Surigao during three separate operations in Barangay Puntod and near Agora Lapasan, this city, over the weekend.
Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) regional director Adrian Alvariño identified four of the suspects as Christine Lagyo, 28, a former teacher, Bryan Degante, 28, Joel Labrador, 29, and Jessa Empas 29. All are from Surigao City.
Alvariño said the suspects, who allegedly yielded 20 grams of suspected shabu and drug paraphernalia, were arrested during a buy-and-bust operation in an inn in Puntod.
Their arrest led to the capture of 27-year old Juneth Ardiente of San Jose, Surigao City, during an entrapment on Mambato Road near Agora, Lapasan carried out by the PDEA and the Agora police led by Chief Insp. Ariel Pontillas.
Ardiente allegedly yielded 300 grams of suspected shabu with a street value placed at over P1 million.
Alvariño said the Puntod operation resulted in the arrest of the alleged supplier, Ardiente.
Ardiente denied owning the suspected shabu but admitted that she brought it from Surigao without knowing what it was. “Gisugo ra man ko ani og wala ko magtuo nga ma-ingon ani. Wala pud ko kabalo nga shabu akong dala,” she said.
She said she was paid P4 thousand to bring the package to Cagayan de Oro.
Also last weekend, the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) arrested 11 drug suspects during a bust-and-bust operation at Celrai, Puntod.
Police identified the main suspect as Rommel Mag-away a.k.a. Omi, 38, who alleged operated a suspected drug den.
SPO4 Noel Oclarit identified the other suspects as Benjie, Clinton and Jay Labta, Jose and Joselito Jamis, Mary Ann Bitor, Joel Galos, Ramil Carnado, Ismael Dimasi and six minors.
“While nagpalit mi sa target, na-discover naa nag pot session. Nagkatibulaag na ang mga tawo maong gidala nato for investigation,” Oclarit said.
Oclarit said the suspects were to undergo drug tests so that police would know if they were into substance abuse.
Police seized during the operation six sachets of suspected shabu and drug paraphernalia.