DOJ chief lauds prosecutors in securing conviction in the Php2-B Subic drug case

Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary and Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) Chair Vitaliano Aquirre II shakes hands with Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary and IACAT Co-Chair Judy Taguiwalo after the signing of the Statement of Collective Commitment Against Human Trafficking during the observance of the 2016 World Day Against Human on Friday (July 29, 2016) at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City. Looking on is Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Jaime Morente (left). The World Day Against Human Trafficking was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 2003 and adopted by the member states through a resolution declaring that it is necessary to raise awareness on the issue of trafficking and promote the rights of victims. (MNS photo)

Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary and Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) Chair Vitaliano Aquirre II shakes hands with Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary and IACAT Co-Chair Judy Taguiwalo after the signing of the Statement of Collective Commitment Against Human Trafficking during the observance of the 2016 World Day Against Human on Friday (July 29, 2016) at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City. Looking on is Bureau of Immigration (BI) Commissioner Jaime Morente (left). The World Day Against Human Trafficking was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 2003 and adopted by the member states through a resolution declaring that it is necessary to raise awareness on the issue of trafficking and promote the rights of victims. (MNS photo)

MANILA  (PNA) – Department of Justice (DoJ) Secretary Vitaliano N. Aguirre II lauded the efforts of prosecutors led by Assistant State Prosecutor Juan Pedro “JP” Navera in securing the conviction of the members of the so-called Chin Drug Syndicate.

“I congratulate all our prosecutors who are involved in the successful prosecution of this case. Their valiant efforts validated the acts of our apprehending officers from the Philippine National Police (PNP) who apprehended the accused. But beyond that, our prosecutors, together with the judge, are very instrumental in restoring the people’s trust and confidence in our judicial system,” Aguirre noted.

The case is one of the biggest drug busts in the history of the Philippines.

“This is a major victory in the President’s (Rodrigo Duterte) war on drugs. It sends a chilling effect to all involved in the drug trade in the country. We have sent a very strong warning and message to all who are involved. Deal with drugs and you will find neither refuge nor respite from the law. We will be relentless in pursuing you. We will be relentless in prosecuting you!,” the DOJ chief said.

The Regional Trial Court (RTC) of Olongapo City meted life sentences against six members of a drug trafficking group who were caught in possession of more than 400 kilos of shabu worth Php2 billion in Subic three years ago.

All of the accused — Albert Chin, Romeo Manalo, Joselito Escueta, Coronel Disierto, Dennis Domingo, and Emmanuel Tobias were all orderd to pay a fine of Php1 million each.

Judge Raymond Viray of Olongapo RTC Branch 75 found Chin and Romeo Manalo guilty of selling dangerous drugs while the four others were found guilty of possessing dangerous drugs.

The shabu were seized during a raid conducted by the Philippine National Police Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operations Task Force on a house in Suboc, Zambales on August 11, 2013.

The raid came after five months of joint surveillance, according to authorities

During the surveillance, the law enforcers managed to embed an undercover agent inside the group, that led to the operation.

The shabu was contained in 22 large gym bags and balikbayan boxes and took the police 18 hours to finish hauling the shabu from the house to the police station.

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