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13 fall in Cotabato drug busts

John Unson (Philstar.com) - November 13, 2015 - 7:05pm

NORTH COTABATO, Philippines - Policemen  hauled to jail 13 drug traffickers after operations that started Thursday, meant to address the circulation of narcotics in 17 North Cotabato towns and provincial capital Kidapawan City.

The suspects were nabbed in separate operations in North Cotabato’s Pigcawayan, Alamada, Pikit and Makilala towns.

Policemen, led by Senior Superintendent Alex Tagum of the provincial police, had even traded shots with drug traffickers whose lair in Barangay Batulawan, Pikit they raided with the help of vigilant barrio folks.

The suspects scampered away after they shot the approaching policemen with assault rifles, causing panic among folks residing in the surroundings.

Tagum said no one was hurt in the brief exchange of gunfire.

Tagum said they intensified anew their campaign against circulation of methamphetamine hydrochloride, most known as shabu, in support of the anti-narcotics thrusts of the provincial peace and order council chaired by Gov. Emmylou Mendoza.

Tagum said he is thankful to the council and to local officials in North Cotabato’s 17 towns for supporting their campaign against both large-scale and street level shabu peddlers.

Mendoza is known all throughout North Cotabato for her administration’s extensive, continuing fiscal and technical support to the provincial police office.

Two of the 13 arrested drug traffickers, Alvin Aleman, 39, and Rashid Mama Ariraya, 22, of Aleosan and Pikit towns, respectively, were tagged as operators of big networks dispersing shabu in about 60 barangays in the first district of the province.

Policemen recovered from Aleman’s possession a handgun and P40,000 worth of shabu, ready for distribution to his contacts.

Ariraya voluntarily turned in a gauge 12 shotgun and shabu in sealed sachets to operatives that swooped down his hideout in Pikit.

The provincial police had also scored in its effort to take out motorcycles without registration documents from North Cotabato’s barrio and municipal thoroughfares.

At least 250 motorcycles, some owned by people with shady backgrounds, have been impounded in one operation after another by Tagum and his men in the past four weeks.

One of the impounded bikes, a Honda XRM 100cc bearing license plate MK 1916, was reportedly stolen from a broadcast journalist working for a radio station in Cotabato City.

“We ought to thank Gov. Mendoza and the mayors, including Kidapawan City Mayor Joseph Evangelista, for all of these feats. They have been leading these anti-crime operations all the way. We will not succeed without them,” Tagum said.

Tagum said the local traffic enforcement group of the Kidapawan City government was also instrumental in the recovery of the motorcycles with questionable ownership documents.

 

ACIRC ALEOSAN AND PIKIT ALVIN ALEMAN BARANGAY BATULAWAN COTABATO CITY EMMYLOU MENDOZA KIDAPAWAN CITY KIDAPAWAN CITY MAYOR JOSEPH EVANGELISTA MENDOZA NORTH COTABATO TAGUM
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