Drug dealer nabbed in Libungan buy-bust operations

KIDAPAWAN CITY (MindaNews/17 June) — Authorities arrested in a buy-bust raid on Saturday a suspected drug dealer operating in Libungan, North Cotabato and confiscated from him some P20,000 worth of illegal drugs, reports from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in Region 12 said.

Vince Lachica, PDEA-12 spokesperson, identified the suspect as Michael Palmes, 31, of LucilaVillage in Poblacion in Libungan, North Cotabato.

Lachica said one of their agents posed as buyer and bought a sachet of shabu worth P500 from Palmes.

Immediately, Lachica and other law enforcers from the Regional Intelligence Division (RID)-12 and Regional Public Safety Battalion (RPSB)-12, raided the suspect’s house and saw in plain view eight sachets of suspected shabu and three packs of dried marijuana leaves.

When they further searched the house, they confiscated another sachet of shabu, Lachica said.

The search warrant was issued by Judge George Jabido of the Regional Trial Court based in Midsayap town, also in North Cotabato.

Lachica estimated the street value of the drugs taken from Palmes at P20,000.

The suspect was placed in the custody of the RPSB-12 in Fort Pikit in Pikit town while the drugs were submitted to the office of the  Philippine National Police Crime Laboratory here for quantitative and qualitative examination.

Lachica said cases of violation of Sections 5, 11, and 12 of the Republic Act 9164 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, will be filed on Monday against Palmes.

The raid was jointly conducted by PDEA-12 operatives led by Regional Director Aileen Lovitos, RID-12operatives led by Chief Insp. Eldy Magbanua, and RPSB-12 led by Insp. Salgado.  (Malu Cadelina-Manar/MindaNews)