BuCor chief quits amid talk of revived Bilibid drug trade
Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) Director General Benjamin delos Santos resigned on Thursday following reports that drug syndicates are back in business inside New Bilibid Prison (NBP) in Muntinlupa City.
Delos Santos announced his resignation barely a week after Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II spoke in media interviews about the resurging drug trade at the national penitentiary.
“The issue about the resurgence of [the illegal] drug trade has made me irrelevant,” Delos Santos told the Inquirer in a text message. “My irrevocable resignation effective immediately was filed through [Aguirre]. I will refrain from further comments and take the vow of silence.”
A lawyer and retired police chief superintendent, Delos Santos was considered one of Aguirre’s trusted officials in the Department of Justice. He is a member of Lex Talionis, a law school fraternity that also includes Aguirre and President Duterte.
He took over the BuCor in November 2016 at the time when the new leadership was expected to end the illegal drug trade inside Bilibid, which Aguirre and Mr. Duterte said thrived under then Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, now a senator detained and accused of receiving drug money.
Echoing Aguirre’s earlier statement, Delos Santos admitted that some unscrupulous members of the police Special Action Force—which were posted at the NBP at the start of the Duterte administration—had been colluding with some inmates to resurrect their illicit drug trade.
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