THREE men, including a former overseas Filipino worker (OFW), were arrested in separate buy-busts by operatives of the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) from Oct. 4 to 5, 2020.
Police recovered a drug haul worth P48 million in both operations.
On Oct. 5 in the morning, operatives from CCPO’s Pardo and Talamban police stations arrested Reynald Siit Atillo, 47, a taxi driver, and Reynante Cabije Tacatani, 36, a mechanic, inside the suspects’ rented house in Fatima Homes, Brgy. Inayawan.
Recovered from them were six kilos of suspected shabu worth P41.4 million.
Police Capt. Jonathan Bethooven Taneo, chief of the Talamban Police Station, said they initially received word of Atillo’s operations in their jurisdiction.
But just as Taneo and his men were about to operate on Atillo, the latter reportedly left the Talamban area and moved his operation way south.
When they traced Atillo’s location in Inayawan, Taneo immediately coordinated with Pardo Police Station chief Maj. John Kareen Escober for a joint operation against the suspect.
Police Brig. Gen. Albert Ignatius Ferro, Police Regional Office Central Visayas (PRO 7) director, said Atillo may have been reportedly sourcing his drugs from an inmate of the Cebu City Jail (CCJ) identified only as “Jao.”
Ferro said despite being detained at the CCJ, “Jao” may have masterminded a new drug trafficking syndicate which involves imported high-grade shabu reportedly sourced overseas.
“One indicator why we considered the drugs they smuggled as imported is through its packaging,” Ferro added.
On Oct. 4, operatives of CCPO’s City Intelligence Unit (CIU) arrested a former OFW in a buy-bust held in Sitio Camansi, Brgy. Mabolo, Cebu City.
Police arrested Noel Navarro Oring, 32, who previously worked in the Middle East as a laborer. Recovered from Oring was 60 grams of suspected shabu with an estimated market value worth P408,000.
Maj. Randy Caballes, CIU chief, told reporters that they have been monitoring Oring’s movements for two weeks before they began their operation.
They found out that Oring had been working as a laborer in Qatar for two years before returning to Cebu in 2019 after his work contract expired.
But due to the Covid-19 epidemic and with his savings diminished, Oring turned to a life of crime just to earn more money.
Like Atillo, Oring reportedly sourced his illegal drugs from a detained drug dealer who goes by the name “Kano.”
Following the two operations, Ferro urged local jail officers in Cebu to strengthen security in their facilities especially that the drug trade reportedly continues under their noses.
CCPO director Col. Josefino Ligan said he is closely coordinating with jail officials in the city and implementing measures to ensure that illegal drug traders detained in their jail don’t continue their trade.
This includes putting up signal jammers inside the CCJ to prevent communications between jailed drug traders and their contacts. (AYB, GPL / JKV)