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Police file charges vs suspect in P50M Matnog shabu haul

By Bobby Q. Labalan SORSOGON CITY --- Police had formally filed charges against the main suspect and his cohorts in the illegal drug bust in the port of Matnog recently. Senor Supt. Ronaldo Cabra, Sorsogon police director, in an interview disclosed that charges for violation of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 have already been filed against a certain Ramil Luna Mercado, a resident of Navotas and the registered owner of the Toyota Revo with plate number WLP-687, together with other suspects. Cabral said they are now just awaiting the issuance of the arrest warrant against the suspects. Sorsogon police scored big in its anti-drug operation with the apprehension of the huge shabu shipment at Matnog Port in Matnog, Sorsogon last April 11. The contraband was loaded on the vehicle owned by the suspect which was abandoned inside the port. Authorities had first suspected that the vehicle was loaded with explosives, prompting police to call for bomb experts. But when a K-9 unit inspected the vehicle, it led to the discovery of the illegal drugs which were hidden behind its side walls. The drugs, which weighed 10 kilos, were valued at P50 million. Cabral said the shipment was intended for transport to Mindanao but that the suspects might have been scared when they saw law enforcers who are members of “Task Force Puerto” conducting inspection at the port. This could have prompted them to abandon the vehicle and flee, he added. The police director had earlier said that the vehicle was monitored to have travelled from Lipata Port in Liloan. Leyte passing through the ports of Allen in Samar and then in Matnog on April 7 on its way to Metro Manila. “Maybe they ‘shopped’ for shabu and was on their way back to Visayas and onwards to Mindanao, but when they noticed that Matnog Port has been under high security alert, maybe they got rattled or they panicked prompting them to abandon the vehicle,” Cabral added. The police director said that they are still conducting follow-up investigation on the personal background of the main suspect believed to be a major shabu dealer. He is not in the list of Bicol police, he said. Cabral said they have put a shadow on Mercado to determine his whereabouts to make the arrest easier once the issues the warrant. Mediaworks Communication

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