AMLC deputizes 50 PDEA agents to probe drug money | Inquirer News

AMLC deputizes 50 PDEA agents to probe drug money

By: - Reporter / @dexcabalzaINQ
/ 05:44 AM November 05, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Anti-Money and Laundering Council (AMLC) has deputized 50 agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) to investigate financial instruments that may be used to launder drug money.

The deputation will allow the 50 agents to take on the role of AMLC financial investigators and gather evidence to support court appeals for bank inquiries, petitions for freeze orders, civil forfeiture cases and criminal complaints for money laundering.

The close cooperation between the PDEA and the AMLC has been crucial in preventing drug traffickers from using the country’s financial system to launder drug money.


In September, the PDEA and the AMLC successfully obtained freeze orders against the assets of drug personalities Julie Hao Gamboa, and spouses Ruben and Teresita Taguba, who were linked to the smuggling of “shabu” (crystal meth) into the country.


The freeze order covered 173 bank and credit accounts, insurance policies, 17 real properties and five motor vehicles belonging to the suspects. The market value of the seized real estate properties was at least P70 million.From 2011 to 2018, the AMLC has frozen more than P2 billion worth of assets of suspected drug personalities.

In 2017, forensic data provided by the PDEA enabled the AMLC to successfully freeze some 160 bank accounts and insurance policies in 16 banks and three other financial institutions used by convicted drug lord Peter Co and his associates.

The PDEA agents were deputized in a ceremony at the PDEA national headquarters in Quezon City on Thursday.

In a statement, the PDEA said this would be “a tremendous boost to money laundering investigations considering the limited number of AMLC investigators.”

“With the rapid increase of innovations in banking and finance, such as internet banking, and a multitude of money transfer services available to the public, the PDEA and the AMLC see the need to innovate and forge closer relationships with its stakeholders in order to stay several steps ahead of narcotics trafficking groups,” the PDEA said.

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TAGS: AMLC, drug money, drug traffickers, PDEA

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