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Sari-sari store yields shabu


A 75-year-old man in Argao, Cebu was arrested for allegedly using and selling illegal drugs, shocking his family down to his great grandchildren.

Serafin Rellin was caught by police inside his home-based sari-sari store with packs of shabu and sniffing paraphernalia on Friday afternoon after

In tears, his granddaughter went to the police station in Argao town, 68 kilometers south of Cebu City.

“I’m ashamed of what what happened but I’m also worried,” said 33-year-old Ivy Gelborion, who said rumors of her grandfather’s vice had reached the family but that he had ignored warnings to stop.

When she visited her grandfather in jail, the old man just cried and told her that it was too late to have regrets (“Ulahi na ang pagbasol”).

“Maybe it was God’s will that he was arrested so he would stop his vice. I also don’t want him to set a bad example for my children,” said the woman.

Gelborion said her four children aged 2 to 12 were all horrified by the arrest, especially the eldest, and wouldn’t accompany her to the police station.

Family conflict

A family conflict may have contributed to the problem, she said, as her grandfather was not in good terms with two of his sons, both seamen.

Rellin lived alone in sitio Lala-an, barangay Bulasa and was separated from his second wife.

“We were surprised about what happened because he has several illnesses – rheumatism, a heart ailment and problems with his prostate,” said Gelborion.

Rellin denied owning the drugs and paraphernalia.

Gelborion said the family would raise money for his bail but once he’s temporarily released, he has to stay in her house or in her mother’s house so he doesn’t backslide and get involved in drug deals again.

Gelborion, who lives in another barangay, said she didn’t know about the drug activities of her grandfather but that her mother, one of Rellin’s children, had told her about the rumors of drug dealing and that she had warned Rellin to stop it but her words went unheeded.

All of Rellin’s five children have their own families.

P02 Renato Nacaytuna, desk officer of the Argao Police Station, said he got a call from a concerned citizen on Friday afternoon about the sale of illegal drugs in Rellin’s store.

A police team headed by P03 Rodrigo Teo went to the area and saw Rellin in the store with some drug paraphernalia.

It looked like a pot session was over when they arrived, he said, and that Rellin’s companions had already left.

Police found four plastic sachets of white powder believed to be shabu, two empty sachets, two disposable lighters, an aluminum foil and a plastic straw. Rellin was previously under surveillance by the police which had been tipped off about his activities much earlier.

On Monday, the store owner will be charged with violating sections 11 and 12 of the RA 9165 or Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

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Tags: Cebu , Illegal drugs , methamphetamine hydrochloride , Serafin Rellin , shabu

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