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Tom to stop anti-drug ops if police revamps go on

(The Freeman) - July 7, 2016 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña has threatened to stop going after drug suspects if the government will continue changing the leadership in the Philippine National Police.

He said the constant change is disturbing and disrupts the city's momentum.

"But I'm just telling the Cebuanos, I cannot operate like this. If this is going to continue, I will just give up the fight on drugs. I'll just concentrate on the traffic. Sila nalang magbuot niana," he said yesterday.

Osmeña said he is still waiting for an explanation on the removal of Chief Supt. Patrocinio Comendador Jr. as chief of the Police Regional Office 7, and the eventual assumption of Chief Supt. Noli Taliño to the post.

Osmeña said what bothered him was the haste in removing Comendador, which was 60 days faster than what he was informed of. He said he learned a month ago that Comendador would be replaced after 90 days but as it turned out, he was out of office in 30 days. 

Taliño himself is reportedly unaware of the reason behind Comendador's removal.

"If it's going to be hard to operate with the new administration, I might as well focus my energy on other things. What's the point? …"I'm just waiting to see how these things transform because I'm willing to withdraw in my anti-drug campaign and just leave it up to them. Sila na ang bahala," he said.

He said he would understand if the Duterte administration will change its "players" if it is losing the battle against illegal drugs but the scenario is the exact opposite with the surrender of drug users and dealers.

"It's like being hit at the back. You were fighting the deadliest enemies in front. Now, you're being attacked from behind by your own allies? I don't know. That's the question I'm asking (to) myself. I just want to have a better reading on what their intentions are," he added.

Yesterday, Osmeña met with Taliño at his residence and told him he has nothing against the new PRO-7 chief.

Taliño has vowed to back the city's anti-drugs efforts.

Surrender

Also at Osmeña's house yesterday afternoon, self-confessed drug pusher Mariano Casas, a resident of Lahing-lahing, Barangay Mabolo surrendered to the mayor.

Casas was escorted by former Mabolo councilman Mark Dela Cruz.

Casas told Osmeña and the police officers that he was planning to surrender even before he escaped the raid in Mabolo last Tuesday.

"Nagpatawag man nga adto lang sa barangay hall, mao to pabalikon ko pagka Martes. Uwanon og bahaon man sa amo-a mao to wala ko madayun og surrender," Casas said.

Hours before this, an alleged henchman of the slain Jeffrey "Jaguar" Diaz surrendered to the Guadalupe Police Station.

He requested to have his name withheld but told reporters he surrendered upon his children's request.

He said he has been in the illegal drug trade for eight years and could distribute up to 80 small packets in the streets. Of the P8,000 that he could reportedly earn, P2,000 would go to him.

He said the time when Jaguar told him and their cohorts that he would quit the business was also the time they parted ways. 

"Surrender na kay naa pa tay pamilya, magbag-o nata," his urged other users and dealers.

He was only one of the estimated 40 drug suspects who turned themselves over to the Guadalupe Police.

Dead

At past midnight yesterday, two suspected drug personalities died after they shot it out with operatives of the City Intelligence Branch at a suspected drug den in Villa, Leyson, Bacayan.

The two were identified as a certain Dexter "Bitoy" Ledesma, in his 40s, and a certain "Erning" who was said to be a contact of a certain "Negro," a drug personality.

PO3 Antonio Alester Tejero said a resident of the area approached two of his men who live there, SPO3 Filomeno Mendaros of CIB and PO3 Rodel Abejuela of the Mabolo Police, to report the presence of armed persons.

Mendaros said he and Abejuela then went to the water tank that was allegedly being used as a "kubol-kubol" by the two slain men.

There, a gunfire exchange ensued, which resulted to the death of Ledesma and Erning.

Recovered from the two were .38 revolvers, two fired cal. 38 cartridges, a digital weighing scale, drug paraphernalia, a plastic pack containing dried marijuana leaves, five mobile phones, and motorcycle registration documents.   

Mendaros said that the Ledesma was arrested previously by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group-7 after he posed as a CIDG-7 detective and extorted money.

Meanwhile, in Lapu-Lapu City yesterday afternoon, the wife of a suspected drug den operator and seven other people allegedly sniffing shabu were arrested by the police through a search warrant.

The subject of the warrant was a certain Renante Degulacion, but he eluded arrest. His wife, Rovelyn, 38, and seven others who were sniffing shabu at that time, were not able to escape.

CIDG chief, Senior Supt. Marlon Tayaba, said more than P300,000 worth of shabu were confiscated and arrested seven others with the oldest person was around 60 years old.

He added that Renante could dispose of at least 100 grams of shabu per week and is allegedly a repeat offender. 

Reward

Osmeña handed out a P200,000 cash reward to the cops in the Bacayan shootout.

He also gave P50,000 to operatives of the City Intelligence Branch, Mambaling Police Station for neutralizing Rodrigo "Dambo" Amampang, 47 and a police officer assigned in Mabolo Police Station.

In sum CIB received P150,000 after they have Roberto Suson Carbon, 28, of Salinas Drive Extension, Brgy Lahug, in a police operation on Tuesday afternoon in Sanson Street, Lahug, Cebu City.

But out of the P150,000 the P100,000 is to be shared by Mendaros of CIB and Abejuela for neutralizing Ledesma and Erning.

The other P50,000 is given to the group of Senior Inspector Jovito Labra who cheated death on Tuesday after being shot by Carbon but the latter's firearm jammed.

Chief Inspector Michael Anthony Bastes, chief of the CIB, said that they intend to spend the money for the adopted children scholars of the unit for their educational needs.

He said he will ask the operatives to share some of the money for the purchase of school supplies, uniforms and bags for the children. — Jean Marvette A. Demecillo, Bryner L. Diaz with Ruchelle Ann A. Suaybaguio, Kayesha Dyle R. Gastador, Christopher Kevin S. Ocampo, (FREEMAN)

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