Surgeon, local environment official fall in Davao drug bust

Paul Palacio, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 18 2017 08:48 PM

DAVAO CITY - Operatives of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in Region XI arrested a surgeon and an environment official in a drug bust here for alleged involvement in illegal drugs. 

Dr. Stephen So Tay and Benjamin Jaraplasan Medel, officer-in-charge of the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office in Region V, were caught in an anti-drug raid in the doctor's house in San Pedro Village, Barangay Buhangin here. 

Tay was busted with several sachets of suspected shabu worth around P96,000, assorted drug paraphernalia, a fragmentation grenade, a pick-up allegedly used in the illegal drug trade, and marked money.

PDEA Region XI Officer-in-Charge Naravy Duquiatan said a series of surveillance operations were conducted leading to his arrest.

"Our operatives gathered enough evidence [showing that] allegedly Dr. So Tay is engaging [in] illegal drug activity," Duquiatan said.

During the operation, PDEA agents also arrested Medel, Tay's alleged fraternity brother who was attending a convention here. Both tested positive for drug use.

Duquiatan said the PDEA considers the two high-value targets.

The suspects refused to comment.

Tay and Medel are facing charges for drug sale, possession and use, in violation of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002. 

Another case will be filed against the doctor for illegal possession of an explosive.