2 village chairs nabbed in anti-drug operations in South Cotabato

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/10 October) — Joint operatives arrested two barangay chairmen, one of whom is an ex-officio member of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan or provincial board of South Cotabato, in separate anti-drug operations early Monday in Polomolok town.

Supt. Romeo Galgo Jr., public information officer of the Police Regional Office (PRO)-12, identified the suspects as barangay chairs Juner Coronado of Koronadal Proper and Vicente Yungco Jr. of Poblacion in Polomolok, South Cotabato.

Yungco is the incumbent president of the Liga ng mga Barangay in South Cotabato and represents the group in the provincial board.

Armed with six search warrants, the police official said elements from the PRO-12’s regional anti-drug special operations task group in coordination with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency in Region 12 swooped in on the houses of the two officials before dawn.

Recovered from Coronado’s house were a unit of fragmentation hand grenade and three rounds of live caliber 5.56 ammunition, he said.

At Yungco’s residence, the operatives seized a unit of Browning caliber 9mm pistol with serial number 245NR52681 and a magazine containing 10 live bullets; a steel magazine with 11 rounds of caliber 9mm bullets; a unit of Tomahawk 12-gauge shotgun with serial number SN15W-0771 and 10 rounds of ammunition; 11 rounds of caliber .45 ammunition; a Squires Bingham air gun with serial number 106568; and, a carbon dioxide tank, he said.

Galgo said the two officials were arrested based on the search warrants for violations of Republic Act (RA) 10591 or the Comprehensive Law of Firearms and Ammunition and RA 9516 or Illegal/Unlawful Possession, Manufacture, Dealing in, Acquisition or Disposition of Firearms, Ammunition or Explosives and Instruments.

“Their arrest only shows that our implementation of the law is not selective, whoever you are, whatever status you have in the society,” he said in a statement.

“Once you violate the law, you should answer for it,” he added.

But he did not say whether the two officials were involved in illegal drug-related activities. (MindaNews)