Samar fisherfolk warned vs hiding cocaine haul

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 01 2010 06:49 PM | Updated as of Feb 02 2010 02:49 AM

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Justice on Monday warned fishermen in Salcedo town, Eastern Samar not to hide bricks of cocaine that were dumped in the water by a foreign-owned shipping vessel enroute to Hongkong from South America last December. 

Justice Secretary Agnes Devanadera said fishermen have already turned over a total of 200 kilos of cocaine bricks to narcotics officials since US authorities alerted the Philippine government of a 1-ton shipment of cocaine dumped near Borongan town.

“We would like to warn the residents of Samar regarding the illegal shipment that they may have found. It does not mean that if they found it they do not have any criminal liability under the law. Possession of illegal drugs is a non-bailable offense and carries with it life imprisonment under Republic Act 9165 (Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002),” she said.

Last week, Major Roy Danilo of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency turned over more cocaine bricks found floating off the coast of Barangay Mina-anod in Llorente town. Officials said the three kilos of high-grade cocaine had a street value of P13 million.