P218 Million of cocaine fished out in Sorsogon, the biggest cocaine haul recovered in Bicol.

P218.4 million cocaine recovered off Sorsogon / photo from Sunstar

LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines — Albay Police announced that 40 blocks of cocaine worth P218 million were discovered floating in the waters of Gubat town in Sorsogon last Monday.

According to Brigadier General Arnel Escobal, Bicol regional police chief, said 12 boxes were found by local fishermen Melvin Gregorio, John Mark Nabong and Loubert Ergin floating off Barangay Bagacay on Monday afternoon.

The regional police’s crime laboratory conducted laboratory tests on Tuesday morning, and the results confirmed that the recovered items, with a total weight of 38 kilograms were positively cocaine.

“This is so far the biggest cocaine haul recovered in Bicol,” General Escobal said to the reporters on Tuesday.

Escobal said that the blocks of cocaine found last Monday in Barangay Bagacal added to the total of illegal drugs found in Bicol since February last year to 50 kg, worth about P280 million.

Aside from the recovered cocaine in Barangay Bagacal, several plastic boxes sealed in plastic tape were also netted out of the waters off Vinzons and Paracale towns in Camarines Norte province and Baras and Bagamanoc towns in Catanduanes province.

In spite of the frequent discoveries of illegal drugs in the Bicol region, Regional police could not confirm that Bicol is becoming a “Hotbed” of illegal drug operations. The police could confirm any reports on these illegal activities yet and still collecting intelligence report supporting such declaration.

Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) is still confirming if the cocaine found in the three provinces of Bicol were all from a single source according to PDEA Acting Assistant Director Rogelito Daculla.

“Drug profiling process takes a while since we have limited capabilities in knowing the chemistry, the quality of the drugs and where these were produced,” Dacula added.

He said the drug samples would be submitted to the Australian Federal Police and the US Drug Enforcement Administration for several laboratory testing.

Christian Frivaldo, acting PDEA director in Bicol, said in an earlier interview, that the agency was still investigating if the recovered cocaine were from Mexico, Colombia and other countries from Latin America as possible sources of illegal drugs found in the region.

Source: Inquirer

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