Highland Cordillera Still Phl’s Biggest Producer Of MJ

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BAGUIO CITY (February 20, 2021) – No doubt,  the highland region remains as the biggest producer of good quality marijuana.

This as authorities are into deep probing the link between the recent large hauls of marijuana bricks seized in various areas in Northern Luzon since Thursday.

The latest, on Saturday morning, border control policemen caught Kennedy Bocad Adaoal along the national road in Lucob, Tabuk City trying to sneak out from Kalinga P4 million worth of MJ bricks, reportedly meant to be brought to the National Capital Region.

PDEA-Cordillera said Adaoal crashed his motorcycle loaded with the MJ briks before the border control checkpoint and jumped into a ravine towards the Chico River upon sensing he would be questioned.  “Our border control points in the Cordillera is primarily for the pandemic, but it also serve well to thwart crimes and drug smuggling, so we are taking advantage of it for safer Cordillera,” said Gil Cesario Castro, PDEA-Cordillera director.

Only 6PM Friday night also, 99 MJ bricks and 60 ml hashish oil pegged to reach P12 million were seized at Utocan Norte, Kapyawan, Bauko, Mt. Province from Rexton Magsino Bangang alias Rex, 45, from Kabunagan, Tadian Mt Province.

Bangang aboard a Toyota Tamaraw FX AUV tried to smuggled out through the highway to the lowlands the MJ bricks and oil but joint PDEA,  Mt. Province police and police drug enforcement agents noticed the contraband.

Hours before that also on Friday noon, two drug couriers were flagged down in barangay Barucboc, Quezon, Isabela trying to sneak out 37 marijuana bricks (P4.9M) and 5 grams of shabu (P34,000) to illicit markets.

Marcelo Tudlong Thomas, 29, from Purok 1, Bulanao, Tabuk City, Kalinga and Keruben Winnie Banosan, 32 , from San Juan, Quezon, Isabela are now facing illegal drug charges for the foiled drug smuggling, said Cagayan police director Brig. Gen. Crizaldo Nieves.

Nieves said the suspects offered to do the illegal drugs transaction with intelligence operatives of the Cagayan Valley Special Operations Unit but changed their minds at the last minute and instead opted to meet a government agent who posed as buyer at brgy. Barucboc, Quezon because of the quarantine control checkpoints.

Also on Thursday, some P20 million worth of marijuana bricks and leaves with fruiting tops were seized in Concepcion, Tarlac.

Central Luzon police director Brig. Gen. Valeriano de Leon, regional director of the Police Regional Office-3 (PRO-3), said six suspects– Marlon Miranda and Joey Paleyan, both high-value individuals and residents of Bulanao, Tabuk, Kalinga; Freddie Letta, of Sta. Ana, Manila; Carl Andrei Maico, of Diliman, Quezon City; Via Jean Ortiga, of San Isidro, Northern Samar; and Lorraine Fulgencio, of Project 4, Quezon City, who came from Baguio City were cornered when they sold 163 bricks of dried marijuana leaves.  At least 100 rounds of 5.56 ammunition were also seized from the group.

Artemio A. Dumlao