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Cops keep eye on party drugs

CEBU, Philippines — Following the arrest of two men accused of distributing ecstasy pills in Mandaue City, police in Central Visayas have intensified monitoring of party drugs, especially with the advent of the Sinulog festivities.

“Lalo na ngayon na Sinulog, alam natin every place and event will be having their parties… ngayon pa lang, pipigilan na natin,” said Chief Supt. Jose Mario Espino.

Supt. Reyman Tolentin, spokesperson of the Police Regional Office (PRO)-7, said ecstasy, a form of party drug, is targeted to a limited market, mostly the young generation that can afford its hefty price at P1,800 per pill.

“Only a limited class of people actually procures the drugs,” Tolentin said.

He said PRO-7’s strategy is to discourage partygoers from buying the drug and restrict its flow into parties.

“If supply has already permeated the market then, at least, our law enforcers will attempt to contain or restrict its flow through continuous police operations. With the advent of Sinulog, these anti-drug campaigns will continue,” Tolentin said.

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Last Thursday night, police operatives arrested hotel owner Richard Go, 40, for allegedly distributing the drug, and Neil Benjamin Yap, 33, for allegedly supplying the drug to Go.

They were arrested at Go’s hotel along A.C. Cortes, Barangay Alang-Alang in Mandaue City. The police confiscated ecstasy worth P36,000 during the operation.

“Makakaasa na hindi hahayaan na mag-circulate ang ganitong klase ng party drugs sa Cebu City,” said Christopher Navida, chief of the intelligence branch of the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO).

He said they will coordinate with the team that arrested Go and Yap for information regarding connections in the business.

“I-intensify natin yung campaign against illegal-drugs to include yung party drugs… as of this moment, na-disseminate natin sa CDEU (City Drug Enforcement Unit) na just in case…para hindi mag-circulate yung dugs sa kabataan,” Navida said.

He urged parents to keep a close watch on their children.

“Kailangan natin i-aware ang public para masigurado natin yung mga ganitong klase ng illegal drugs ay hindi mag-circulate sa area ng Cebu City. Sa mga parents, make sure na they will give constant reminders sa anak nila,” Navida said.

Just two days ago, CCPO met security managers of the 100 hotels along the Grand Parade route to inform them of the strict implementation of city ordinances in observance of the Sinulog festivities.

Navida said the meeting was also meant to capacitate security managers on spotting suspicious persons who may attempt to sneak in any form of illegal drug or carry out terroristic acts. (FREEMAN)

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