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If found conniving with drug dealers: Hotels risk of closure

CEBU, Philippines - If hotels are proven to be cooperating with drug dealers, they risk of facing closure of their establishment, so said Cebu City Police Office Director Joel Doria.

“We can always file cases naman.  Lahat naman kasi nakikita natin, then appropriate charges will be filed.  Pwede kasi nandun lahat sa premises nila eh, it will lead to ipasara ang business,” Doria said.

Doria made the statement after a series of arrests and police operations against drug dealers who are reportedly using hotels and motels in their trade.

Doria added that drug personalities are using other methods to evade arrest and confuse the authorities about their exact location.

“Nag i-evolve, nag-i-innovate.  At least para iligaw ang ating kapulisan, kaya gumagamit sila ng hotel (at) motel para sa transaction,” Doria said.

The fact that the police were still able to neutralize and arrest the suspects, despite the suspects’ uncanny strategy, prove the effectiveness of the police’s anti-illegal drug operations, Doria said.

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“Well, actually may nahuhuli na tayo before pero ito yung pinakamarami kasi 14. That only proves na effective talaga ang ating campaign kasi nagtatago na sila,” Doria said.

However, Doria took note that hotel management so far are very cooperative when it comes to briefing conferences with the City Intelligence Branch.

The police have also provided tips on how to spot suspicious behavior and the hotel staff are encouraged to be vigilant, especially the room boys and the security guards.

“Bini-brief sila kung ano ang dapat tingnan.  Binibigay natin na hint sa kanila para i-check nila palagi. More on sa security managers tayo, mas maganda sila mismo ang nasa ground,” Doria said.

Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA)-7 Regional Director Yogi Ruiz earlier said that hotels are urged to cooperate to legitimate undercover agents when they are asked of their guest list, but at the same time maintaining confidentiality on other customers.

Recently, 14 drug personalities were arrested from a hotel located in Mabolo, yielding an estimated amount of P500,000.

Just this month, Regional Drug Enforcement Unit operatives arrested six drug personalities in two separate motels in Lapu-Lapu, City and Pasil, Cebu City.

On the same day, five suspects were also arrested inside a motel during a buy-bust operation in Barangay Pajo, Lapu-Lapu City.  The police seized suspected illegal drugs worth P148,000.

It was also the same lodge in San Nicolas, Cebu City where PDEA-7 recovered P4.2 Milliion worth of shabu last December. (FREEMAN)

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