DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/01 April) — Government agents raided simultaneously 10 warehouses in Davao, North Cotabato and Sultan Kudarat Thursday, arrested nine persons and confiscated P50 million worth of adulterated fertilizers.
A source from the La Filipina Uygongco Corporation, the firm that manufactures the “Amigo Planters” brand, said the raid stopped the repacking and distribution of 70 truckloads of sacks of the adulterated fertilizers.
The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the seized urea fertilizers were valued at P50 million.
Agents from the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) in Manila, backed by colleagues from Davao City and the other areas, made the simultaneous raids.
In Davao City, where it raided the MLP Mindanao 5K Transport Corp. in Agdao and Golden Century Compound in Maa, agents arrested nine persons, including Edgar Calledo, the owner and operator of the store outlet and warehouse.
Also raided were the Inson Agro Farm Supply in Sto.Tomas, Davao del Norte; Caloy’s Farmers Mart and Caloy’s Agrivet Supply in Kapalong, Davao del Norte; LS Agritrade in Kabacan, North Cotabato; Topsire Agri Buy and Sell in Pikit, North Cotabato; CLS Agritrade in Carmen, North Cotabato; Abigail FarmSupply Inc. in Isulan, Sultan Kudarat; and a warehouse in Datu PiangMamasalakeg St., Pikit, North Cotabato
Perpetrators will face charges of economic sabotage, adulteration and mislabeling.
The search warrants were issued on March 28 by Judge Caroline Rivera-Colasito of the Manila Regional Trial Court. The warrants were served simultaneously by agents of the Manila unit of the CIDG and the National Police’s Anti-Organized Crime Division in Camp Crame.
In its complaint to the different prosecution offices where the raided warehouses are located, the CIDG said the warehouses were placed under surveillance for one month, although the La Filipina Uygongco Corp. conducted a longer monitoring from December last year following mounting complaints that ordinary salt was mixed with the original formulation of the Amigo Planters.
A management source confided that the three-month monitoring trimmed the number of erring distributors to ten.
The La Filipina Uygongco Corp. said the raid “should put a stop to all the other moves to adulterate our product and victimize our unsuspecting farmers.” (MindaNews)