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Drug rings now use postal service

CRIMINALS still dared to smuggle illegal substance despite the current drug war in the country initiated by the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.

Authorities said the international drug syndicates were also using the Philippine postal system to transport contraband including cocaine, cannabis and party drug ecstasy.

On Tuesday, Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña Jr. presented to members of the media the smuggled P3.2 million worth of illegal drugs his men assigned at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport seized on separate occasions at the Central Mail Exchange Center in Pasay City.

The contraband—five parcels of marijuana and one ecstasy parcel—were intercepted by Customs agents under the supervision of District 3 Collector Ramon Anquilan after X-ray machines showed image irregularities. 

SEIZED DRUGS. Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña (center) turns over millions of pesos’ worth of seized illegal drugs to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, consisting of five parcels containing 10,000 grams of marijuana and a parcel of ecstasy, estimated to be worth P3 million, at the Central Mail Exchange Center in Pasay City. Norman Cruz

After X-ray examination, Customs examiners placed the items under physical examination with the presence of the Anti-Illegal Drugs Task Force for confirmation of illegal substances, Lapeña said 

Based on the documents, the parcels, declared as food additives, apparels, handbags, and school supplies, were consigned to Mark Dinglasan of Barangay Hagdang Bato Itaas, Mandaluyong City; Joel Shila of SSS Village, Marikina City; Vicky Alvarez of Sto. Niño St., Marikina City; Kim Equipado of Barangay Maharlika, San Juan City; James Garcia; and Divino Peleo.

“Some of the parcels which arrived at CMEC are from USA,” Lapeña said.

He added the contraband were already turned over to the custody of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency for proper disposition.

The consignees will be charged with violation of provisions of Republic Act 10863, or the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act and RA 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

In June, Airport and Customs operatives also intercepted in CMEC a package shipped from Canada containing marijuana worth more than P100,000.

Four vacuum-sealed plastic pouches containing 343 grams of cannabis dried leaves were discovered in the parcel upon examination by authorities.

Deandre Travis Johnson Cruz, identified as the claimant of the seized parcel, was brought to jail. 

Shabu, marijuana and ecstasy are the top three narcotics distributed in the streets and these prohibited substances are manufactured by Chinese, Taiwanese and Mexican drug syndicates.

PDEA officials said the country’s drug problem could now be classified as national security threat. 

The authorities vowed the government’s crackdown on drug dealing in the country would continue with the goal of catching protectors and financiers of the illegal drug trade.

For his part, Manila International Airport Authority general manager Eddie Monreal ordered his men to be on alert in and outside the airport against illegal drug trafficking to discourage international and local drug syndicates from using the Philippines as a transshipment point or dumping ground for their illegal substances. With Vito Barcelo

Topics: Drug rings , international drug syndicates , Philippine postal system , Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña Jr. , illegal drugs
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