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PDEA probes how cocaine washed ashore in Caraga

The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) XI yesterday said investigation continues to catch the drug traffickers behind the 39 cocaine bricks recovered from shoreline of Caraga, Davao Oriental on Sunday and Monday.

PDEA XI chief Antonio Rivera said they are working on the assumption that the drugs were dumped at high seas and they just washed ashore.
“Then another thing is it could be a diversionary tactic that was dropped intentionally so that the focus will be the eastern part of the country then somewhere else they can sneak in more drugs ,” Rivera told reporters yesterday during the AFP-P PNP press briefing held at the Royal Mandaya hotel.
“Another thing is that the Philippines is a transshipment point wherein the cocaine recovered will be delivered somewhere else,” Rivera said.
Earlier, President Rodrigo Duterte has warned that country is in danger following the entry of an international drug syndicate dealing in cocaine across the seas of the country.
“So we assume that the origin is there then the main ingredient is the coca plant which can be found in South America,” River said.
“So saying that the drug cartel was already inside, yes. In fact, just a month ago there was a Sinaloa member convicted in our country,” he added.
Rivera, however, said cocaine is not prevalent in the Philippines and its availability is not that high.
The PDEA national headquarters is coordinating with its international counterparts for the possible identification of the traffickers.
Commodore Roy Echeverria, the commander of Coast Guard District Southeastern Mindanao (CGDSEM), said they have conducted a joint maritime patrol together with the PDEA and the Maritime police to secure the shores.
“We’re conducting foot patrols and intensifying our coastal patrol operations so that in that way, we can get information from the residents in the area,” Echeverria said.

Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency regional director Antonio Rivera shares information to Commodore Rey Echeverria, commander of the Philippine Coast Guard Southeastern Mindanao. The two were guests during the AFP-PNP media forum following the recent recovery of 39 bricks of cocaine in Caraga, Davao Oriental. BING GONZALES


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