DAR lawyer on PDEA’s target list, nabbed

Angelo Andrade, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 24 2018 10:26 PM

Atty. Mario Jay Pielago. Handout

CAGAYAN DE ORO - The chief legal officer of the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) in Misamis Oriental was arrested on Wednesday morning, according to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in Region 10.

PDEA said Atty. Mario Jay Pielago was on their regional target list. He was arrested inside his home in RER Subdivision in Barangay Kauswagan after a search warrant was served.

During the search, authorities found drug paraphernalia and three big sachets of suspected shabu weighing 15 grams with an estimated street value of P150,000.

"Matagal na nating subject itong tao na ito. He is distributing his items sa mga bingohan, at dito mismo sa RER, matagal nang nireraklamo ito. Ang kagandahan ngayon, nakuha natin," said PDEA 10 Director Wilkins Villanueva.

Pielago admitted that he was using illegal drugs but denied that he owned the suspected shabu recovered from his home.

"Totoo, may nakuha silang droga tatlong sachet which is definitely not mine. If you look at my text message, I'll be honest, meron akong tinext kung meron ba sila kahit worth P500 lang," said Pielago.

The lawyer is considered as a high-value target since he works in a government agency.

He is facing charges for violation of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.