Drug pushers masquerading as car dealers arrested | Inquirer News
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Drug pushers masquerading as car dealers arrested

/ 12:33 AM September 02, 2013

Authorities arrested on Saturday night two drug pushers whose modus operandi included giving their big-time customers a car as a bonus.

The two men were identified as Harold Wilford Padilla, 34; and Arnel Ignacio (not the TV personality and comedian), 49; both of Malabon City. Seized from the pair were a Glock .40 pistol and five kilos of high-grade methamphethamine hydrochloride or “shabu” valued at around P30 million.

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“They usually throw in a car as a bonus,” Senior Insp. Robert Razon, head of the Quezon City Police District’s Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operations Task Group (QCPD-AIDSOTG), told the Inquirer Sunday.

He said the pair was arrested after they sold an undercover policeman a kilo of shabu with a black Nissan Terrano thrown in to sweeten the deal as well as to provide a cover for their illegal activities.

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According to Razon, his group arrested Padilla and Ignacio at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday at the corner of Banawe Avenue and Macopa Street in Sta. Mesa Heights after a month-long surveillance operation.

Before the suspects’ arrest, Razon said the undercover agent contacted Padilla about buying a kilo of shabu.

During the transaction, Padilla gave the agent the keys to the sport utility vehicle instead of handing him the drugs.

The P1.5 million worth of shabu was later found in the Nissan Terrano while Padilla yielded a Glock handgun.

The antidrug operatives were also able to capture Ignacio who was waiting nearby in another car for Padilla. A search of his vehicle yielded four more kilos of shabu inside a backpack.

Razon estimated the seized drugs to be worth P30 million as he said the current street value of a kilo of high-grade shabu was P6 million.

He said that neither of the suspects was in the city’s watch list of drug offenders so it was not clear how long the duo had been operating. He told the Inquirer that they only became aware of Padilla’s illegal activities following a tip from an informant.

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Razon explained that drug dealers who sell large quantities of shabu usually also give to the buyer the car where the drugs are kept to avoid detection. “So it would appear like a simple car transaction,” he said.

The QCPD-AIDSOTG head added that the suspects have refused to tell them who their supplier was. Both are detained in the QCPD-AIDSOTG holding cell pending the filing of a case against them.

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TAGS: car dealers, Drug pushers, Illegal drugs, methamphethamine hydrochloride, QCPD-AIDSOTG, Quezon City Police District’s Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operations Task Group, shabu
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