By JIGGER J. JERUSALEM
with JOEY NACALABAN
A COUNCILOR from a village in Bukidnon was arrested by an anti-narcotics team composed of police officers and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) agents during a buy-and-bust operation in Barangay Lapasan, this city, Monday afternoon.
Arrested was John Mark Sabanal, 33, married, and an incumbent barangay councilor of San Roque in Sumilao town.
Confiscated from him were four sachets of white crystalline substance believed to be shabu, estimated to be worth P4,000. Police alleged he was caught selling a small plastic containing the suspected crystal meth to a law enforcer posing as a customer.
Less than an hour later, the team apprehended one Rector Gonzaga, also known as Gogoy, 34, a resident of Barangay Gusa, this city, and Acsani Ali, 19, of Barangay Macabalan, this city. Both are single and have previous police records.
Maj. Evan Viñas, city police spokesperson, said Ali was identified by Sabanal as his alleged drug supplier.
Taken from Ali were three pieces of heat-sealed plastic containing suspected shabu weighing about 13 grams, with an estimated street value of P65,000.
Viñas said Sabanal went to Lapasan from Sumilao, about 59 kilometers away, after receiving a call from a friend that someone wants to buy from him.
He said it was Sabanal who provided operatives details about Ali, including his location.
As soon the village official was apprehended, the arresting team drew up a “link diagram” to establish his connection to suppliers and other drug personalities.
“When his (Ali) identity and whereabouts were determined, operatives made an attempt to trap him,” Viñas.
He said Ali was arrested not far from where Sabanal was apprehended.
He said they are now detained at the Lapasan police station awaiting the filing of cases against them.
Viñas said the suspects would be facing charges for allegedly selling illegal drugs, in violation of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.
In El Salvador City on Tuesday afternoon, police arrested three persons who were caught allegedly in the act of using illegal drugs inside a house.
Lt. Col. Randy Anito, El Salvador Municipal police station chief, identified the suspects as Antonio Daloro, John Dariel Amaro, and John Paul Bacor, all of Zone 2, Molugan, El Salvador City, Misamis Oriental.
Taken from the suspects’ possession were three sachets containing suspected shabu and several drug paraphernalia.
Anito said the said operation was based on a warrant of arrest issued by a regional judge against Daloro.
“Pero nataymingan lang nga pag-operate na namo, kamulo diay syang session uban sa laing duha ka kauban mao tong silang tulo among gipangdakop,” Anito said.
All the suspects have been detained at the El Salvador police station while awaiting formal filing of charges.