Cebu News

Three “HVT” dead in police shootout

Mae Clydyl L. Avila - The Freeman
Three �HVT� dead in police shootout
The Drug Enforcement Group (DEG) and the Cebu City Drug Enforcement Unit (CDEU) hatched the operation around 9 p.m. at Sitio Panaghiusa, Barangay Duljo Fatima.

CEBU, Philippines — Three drug suspects were killed in a shootout with police operatives during a buy-bust operation that yielded almost P6 million worth of suspected shabu in Barangay Duljo-Fatima, Cebu City Wednesday night.

The Drug Enforcement Group (DEG) and the Cebu City Drug Enforcement Unit (CDEU) hatched the operation around 9 p.m. at Sitio Panaghiusa, Barangay Duljo Fatima.

Killed on the spot were the Oralde brothers Joseph, 44, and Romeo, 34.  Israel Patunob known as “Ace,” 37, who allegedly served as the brothers’ runner, was rushed to a nearby hospital but was declared dead at 2 a.m. yesterday.

DEG chief Glenn Mayam said that two unidentified cohorts of the suspects eluded arrest.

Mayam said that during their operation, a covert cop posed as a buyer and bought P400,000 worth of shabu using a marked money.

Upon consummating the transaction, the suspects noticed that it was a cop that they were transacting with and pointed their firearms towards the cop’s direction.

The covert cops, who were on standby, immediately retaliated, resulting in the shootout that killed the three.

“Wala na mi nabuhat kay sila man ang una nipabuto.  Mas maayo kung wala na lang sila mosukol pero kinahanglan i-preserve namo amo kaugalingon kay naa pud mi pamilya,” Mayam said.

Recovered from the group’s possession was a large pack of shabu with an estimated worth of P5,900,000, two .45 caliber pistol and a .38 revolver.

SPO1 Winston Ybañez, investigator from the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) Homicide Section, said there was no foul play and the firearms recovered will be subjected to a ballistic examination.

He said the operation was set two months ago, after their names surfaced from previously arrested drug suspects.

He added that what strained the monitoring and validation was because the suspects would not stay in one location for too long. He added that the narcotics team had a hard time getting their trust.

Mayam said that based on their monitoring, the suspects are the drug suppliers in Cebu and in the region and that they are considered as high-value targets based on the volume of drugs that they can dispose.

He said that the two brothers can dispose of 500 grams of shabu per day, and more than two kilos of drugs per week.

“Naglisud mi og penetrate ani nila kay di mosalig dayon. Ang mga kliyente nila kay distributor gyud og shabu. Dili lang bast-basta nga pusher,” he said.

Chief Inspector Randy Caballes, station commander of Mambaling Police Station, said the suspects were not on their watch list, as they are just new tenants in the area.

Meanwhile, the CCPO is not letting up on its campaign against illegal drugs and other criminalities, with the 67th Oplan Pokemon arresting 67 suspects for different cases.

“With regards to our campaign against illegal drugs, we have confiscated total grams of 81.03 which has a DDB (Dangerous Drug Board) value of P87,320,” said Senior Inspector John Kareen Escober, City Intelligence Branch of the CCPO deputy chief, said during a press conference.

The police seized a total of 16 medium packs and 101 small sachets of suspected shabu. Other illegal drug paraphernalia were also seized which amounted to P2,720. — Patricia Faith Santillan, Saint Theresa’s College Intern/GAN (FREEMAN)

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