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PDEA Director Wilkins M. Villanueva and PNP Chief Debold M. SInas

PNP, PDEA may have been played by drug syndicate—Dela Rosa

Senator Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa recently aired his suspicion that drug syndicates may have deliberately misled agents of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) that resulted in a deadly shootout. 

Dela Rosa stressed he is only theorizing that the PNP and PDEA were played by drug syndicates during Feb. 24 misencounter at the parking lot outside the Ever Gotesco mall in Quezon City. The incident left four people dead and several others injured. 

Dela Rosa said in a radio interview: “It could be that one of their informants,  or the asset they tapped were part of a large syndicate who was answering to somebody straight from the above (syndicate) to do something to make these two groups break into a firefight.” 

 “If you notice, the supply of shabu is now very scarce, they are now selling marijuana. So that maybe part of their tactics to make sure both camps will fight each other. And this could lead to President Duterte telling both the PDEA and PNP to hold off their drug operations and fix their coordination first,” the former PNP chief added. 

“That would definitely give them a window of opportunity to pursue their illegal drug trade. But that’s just one of our theories.” 

Dela Rosa said he is not discounting that possibility that a corrupt official of the PDEA or PNP is also involved in the illegal drug trade. 

“I’ve been an operative before and I’m familiar with such operations. That even if both sides claim they were doing legitimate buy bust operations, I have suspicions that someone from, or somebody or one from each side is involved in selling,” the senator stressed. 

“I really think someone is involved in selling, that’s why a firefight ensued,” he pointed out. 

Dela Rosa will wait for the official PNP’s Board of Inquiry’s report to be submitted to the Senate where his panel, the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs, will investigate the incident. 

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