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Tuesday, February 7, 2017

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WANTED. A poster of suspected drug lord Richard “Buang” Prevendido is seen on a wall in Jaro, Iloilo City. Anyone who can give information leading to his arrest will be rewarded handsomely. GUIJO DUEÑAS/PN

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ILOILO City – Elusive suspected drug lord Richard “Buang” Prevendido has protectors from the Philippine National Police (PNP) and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), according to his nephew and arrested drug suspect Ednie Jimena.  

The protectors were an official from the Police Regional Office 6 (PRO-6) and two former PDEA agents, Jimena said during a tactical interrogation by PDEA deputy regional director Levi Ortiz.

Jimena, suspected subgroup leader of the Prevendido drug group, was arrested in Parañaque City on Jan. 31.

“We have to investigate his allegation,” said Ortiz, noting that Jimena refused to execute an affidavit.

Jimena also did not give the names of Prevendido’s alleged protectors, Ortiz added.

If the drug suspect were to be believed, the two former PDEA personnel received a P20,000 payola from Prevendido every 15th day of the month.

Cousin Bonie Gregori, another arrested drug suspect and nephew of Prevendido, was the one tasked to deliver the payola, claimed Jimena.

Though Jimena did not give names, PDEA-6 checked its records. Ortiz said they have one AWOL personnel and one who was reassigned outside Western Visayas. He declined to name them, too, explaining that without an affidavit, Jimena’s statements were just hearsay.

Besides, said Ortiz, “Hindi alam ni Jimena kung sino talaga tumatanggap kasi si Bonie Gregori ang nag di-deliver ng pera,” said Ortiz.

The PRO-6 has also started checking Jimena’s claim. But Superintendent Gilbert Gorero, spokesperson of the regional police, lamented that the drug suspect did not give a name or even just the police official’s assignment.

Jimena is currently detained at PDEA-6’s detention facility in this city. He was arrested on Jan. 31 in front of his apartment at Salvador Estate, Parañaque City through an arrest warrant issued by Judge Juana Edita Panigbatan Nafarrete of the Regional Trial Court for violation of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

The police and PDEA remain clueless on the whereabouts of Jimena’s uncle. But they are receiving lots of tips from informants interested to bag the reward money of a million pesos for the successful capture of the suspected drug lord.

Law enforcers hunting Prevendido aim to capture him alive, according to Superintendent Harold Tuzon, director of the Iloilo Police Provincial Office.

He has to answer the charges filed against him in court,” said Tuzon.

The city and provincial governments of Iloilo each offered a cash reward of P500 thousand – for a total of P1 million – to whoever could give information leading to Prevendido’s arrest.

In a bid to further hasten the suspect’s arrest, the police circulated photos of Prevendido.

According to Senior Superintendent Remus Zacharias Canieso, city police director, he also sought the help of the media, both print and broadcast, through their websites and social media accounts like Facebook.

The identities of the informants will be treated with strict confidentiality, said Canieso.

He also reiterated that the monetary reward would only be released to the civilian informant./PN




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