Syndicate member dies, official nabbed in drug bust

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By Bong Garcia

A SUSPECTED drug syndicate member was killed while a village official was arrested in anti-drugs operations in the provinces of Zamboanga del Norte and Zamboanga del Sur, the police said Friday, November 11.

Police Regional Office-Zamboanga Peninsula Spokesman Michael Nicolas identified the slain alleged drug syndicate member as Mohammad Sabuddin, 32 and Russel Candia, 44, a village councilor of Tagulo, Sultan Naga Dimaporo, Lanao del Norte.

Nicolas said Sabuddin was killed in a shootout at 9:05 p.m., Thursday, in the village of Sirawai proper, Sirawai, Zamboanga del Norte.

Nicolas said the shootout ensued as Sabuddin opened fire while the combined police and military operatives were conducting law enforcement operation through the service of search warrant and anti-drugs operation at the residence of Erwin Dacula alias Thots, who managed to elude arrest.

Nicolas said recovered from the slain suspect’s possession were a caliber .45 pistol with ammunition.

Recovered from the residence of Dacula were M-16 Armalite rifle with ammunition, nine small-sized heat-sealed plastic sachets of suspected methamphetamine hydrochloride or shabu and two pieces of aluminum foil.

Nicolas said that Candia was arrested in a drug bust around 7:45 a.m., Thursday, at Purok Padayhag Uno in the village of San Carlos, Tukuran, Zamboanga del Sur.

Confiscated from the possession of Candia were four small-sized heat-sealed plastic sachets of suspected shabu, P200 marked money consisting of two P100 bills, a motorcycle and prohibited drug paraphernalia.

Nicolas said Candia was detained while appropriate case for violation of Republic Act 9165 otherwise known as the Comprehensive Dangerous Drug Act of 2002 is set to be filed against the latter.