80 kilos of seized drugs destroyed
Iris Hazel M. Mascardo (The Freeman) - December 11, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines —  At least 80 kilos of illegal drugs with estimated value of around P194 million were destroyed by thermal incineration at the compound of a cement firm in Barangay Tina-an, Naga City, Cebu, Tuesday morning.

Following months of inventory, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA-7), Police Regional Office-7, in coordination with the Regional Trial Courts and Cebu province, were able to destroy the drugs, which represent a part of the confiscated evidences during various operations.

“We were able to destroy almost all the drug evidence from the court. This is a welcome progress of our illegal drug campaign,” PDEA-7 Director Wardley Getalla said.

According to Getalla, the destruction was a manifestation that the evidences were properly recorded and proof that no drugs confiscated will be subject to “recycling.”

Police Brigadier General Valeriano De Leon, PRO-7 regional director, supported Getalla’s statement as well, saying that he is hopeful that the destruction would eliminate doubts about the possible recycling of drugs.

He said the destruction aimed to make sure that none of these will be returned to the market.

Getalla said that the evidences left in their storage facility were those that still don’t have court order since the cases are still ongoing.

Meanwhile, in the PNP, De Leon said that there are around 120 kilos of illegal drugs left in the storage facility.

De Leon said that they are still waiting for the order of the court to start the destruction of these remaining evidences.

De Leon added that she had already talked to Governor Gwendolyn Garcia for the quick process of the court’s order to immediately start destruction.

“There is also headway of the city to provide the PDEA a destruction equipment  so that we will not be having this all the time,” De leon said.

Yesterday’s destruction was freely offered by the Apo Cement Corporation.

 Getalla emphasized that most of the destroyed evidences were from the PNP Crime Lab and the Regional Trial Courts.

Getalla revealed that the destroyed drugs were just around 10 percent of their confiscations, while the remaining 90 percent is still in their storage facility considering that those pertain to ongoing cases.

Getalla assured that the confiscated evidences from cases that were already closed will automatically be subject for destruction.

He said that they are hopeful to have a facility soon meant for drug destruction.

For their part, CEMEX officials stated that they are open to extend their destruction facility to the authorities for the meantime when they don’t have one yet. It will be free, they said.

The drug destruction could have cost the authorities P100,000, according to APO CEMEX plant director Gerry Rota.   JMD

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