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PDEA destroys marijuana plantation in Sultan Kudarat

The marijuana farm in Palimbang, Sultan Kudarat that authorities destroyed with the help of local officials and barangay leaders. John Unson
SULTAN KUDARAT, Philippines — Drug enforcement agents on Tuesday burned 4,500 marijuana shrubs uprooted during a military-assisted operation in Palimbang, Sultan Kudarat.
 
Gil Cesario Castro, regional director of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, said Motmot Sakay, the owner of the marijuana plantation, escaped as PDEA agents and personnel of the Philippine Marine Corps approached the farm from three directions.
 
PDEA-12 agents and Marines found the marijuana plants in Sakay's farm, located in remote Barangay Napnapon in Palimbang, a seaside town in Sultan Kudarat.
 
“We are thankful to the Marines and the vigilant local officials and barangay leaders who supported our operation that resulted in the uprooting and subsequent burning of the confiscated marijuana plants,” Castro said.
 
He said they will charge Sakay, who is at large, with violation of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act.
 
The joint Marine-PDEA operation in Palimbang on Monday comes after a raid on a marijuana farm in Arakan town in Cotabato province four days prior.
 
Agents of PDEA-12 based in Cotabato and personnel of the Arakan municipal police set 2,000 marijuana plants on fire. 
 
Jerome Tulosan, owner of the farm, was cornered by the raiding teams while trying to flee the scene.
 
Castro said their agents learned of Tulosan’s illegal farming activity from Barangay Sumalili, Arakan from local leaders supportive of the government's campaign against illegal drugs.
 
Castro said the Cotabato provincial police office also helped carry out the anti-narcotics operation.
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