A drug suspect was killed and three others were arrested in a series of raids conducted by the authorities in Tagum City, Davao del Norte on Friday.
Police recovered illegal drugs and loose firearms during the operation.
Major Jason Baria, the spokesperson of Police Regional Office, identified the fatality as Melchor “Iking” Hermo of Purok Libra, Visayan Village, Tagum City. Hermo is listed as Level 1 in the drug watch list.
Those arrested were identified as Delfin Sepulveda, Noriel Diaz, and Aquilino “Toto” Chavez, all residents of Visayan Village.
Baria said the four were noted drug pushers in Tagum City.
He said they were able to secure four search warrants from Justice on Wheels (JOW) Judge Oscar Noel Jr. of Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 38 in General Santos City against the four suspects.
Baria said that on Friday they conducted four simultaneously predawn operations since the safe houses of the targets were in one village.
At 2:30 a.m., the team raiding the house of Hermo was engaged in a gunfight after the suspect allegedly fired a gun.
The wounded Hermo was rushed to the nearest hospital but was declared dead on arrival by the attending physician.
Recovered from the suspect at the encounter scene were a caliber 357 revolver and three plastic sachets containing white crystalline, suspected to be shabu, with an estimated value of P15,000.
In the house of Sepulveda in Purok Macopa, Visayan Village, Baria said operatives also seized three plastic sachets of white substance, suspected to be shabu, with an estimated value of P15,000 and other drug paraphernalia.
The team raiding the house of Diaz in Purok Macopa, Visayan Village recovered three plastic sachets containing white crystalline, suspected to be shabu, with an estimated value of P15,000, and seven bullets of an undetermined gun.
The team that swooped the house of Chavez in Purok Margarette, Visayan Village also recovered three sachets of suspected shabu worth P15,000 and other drug paraphernalia.
Police are preparing to file charges against the suspects for possession of prohibited drugs, illegal possession of ammunitions and for the election gun ban, which runs until June 12.
Brig. Gen. Marcelo Morales, PRO regional director, lauded the operatives involved in the operations.
“The results of these operations depict the vigorous efforts of our field commanders to do their task and serve the community well,” Morales said, adding that a drug-free region can be achieved if there is a continued effort between the authorities and the community against drug suspects.