ESPERANZA, Agusan del Sur — Local councilor Apolonio Layugan is now in the custody of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency's (PDEA) Caraga regional office.
Layugan was under surveillance by PDEA-Caraga agents for the past few months.
The arresting team was composed of operatives from PDEA and the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, as well as local and provincial police.
Layugan faces charges of selling and possessing prohibited drugs, and illegal possession of firearms.
By virtue of a warrant issued by RTC Branch 2 Butuan City, authorities searched Layugan's residence in Barangay Dacutam here.
During the operation, authorities recovered 8 heat-sealed transparent plastic sachets containing suspected shabu weighing about 5 grams, with an estimated value of P59,000.
According to Gilbert Buenafe, acting regional director of PDEA Caraga, Layugan is considered a high-value target.
"High-value target s'ya . . . dahil po siya ay may malaking katungkulan at s'ya po ay halal ng bayan bilang isang myembro ng konseho ng Esperanza," Buenafe said in a phone interview.
Besides the drug items, a 9-mm caliber glock pistol with 12 live rounds was also confiscated.