Photo Courtesy: (5th ID)

CAMP MELCHOR DELA CRUZ, Upi, Gamu, Isabela- P339,915,000 worth of marijuana was uprooted and burned by the joint operatives of Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, National Bureau of Investigation, PNP Cordillera, and 503rd Infantry Brigade in the different plantation sites in Tinglayan, Kalinga on their four-day operation.

From February 25-28 the said operatives have successfully eradicated 1,577,500 pieces of fully grown marijuana; 102,000 grams of dried marijuana leaves; 86,000 grams of marijuana seeds; 20,000 grams of marijuana fruiting tops, and 15,000 grams of marijuana stalks in the 11 plantation sites in Barangay Tulgao, 12 plantation sites in Barangay Loccong, and two plantation sites in Barangay Butbut, all in the municipality of Tinglayan.

“We have uprooted and burned more than three hundred million worth of marijuana in a total land area of 121, 300 square meters. Our troops will further assist the other law operating troops in the campaign against illegal drugs. The amount of eradicated marijuana is no joke.

This can destroy lives, especially of our youth. So, we will keep an eye to the area to ensure the prevention of growing marijuana in the municipality,” Brig. Gen. Santiago Enginco, Brigade Commander of 503rd Infantry Brigade said.

On the other hand, Pol. Brig. Gen. Ronald Oliver Lee revealed that on February 27, three suspected marijuana cultivators were arrested in Barangay Butbut of the said municipality. “The arrested suspects are identified as Peter Bagtang, 22 years old, Langao Bagtang, 70 years old, and a minor. While we are implementing marijuana eradication in the mountainous part of Barangay Butbut, we saw the suspects gathering marijuana with their firearms hooked up in their bodies. We immediately arrested them though they attempted to escape.”

The PNP has confiscated more or less 5,000 pieces of fully grown marijuana in the possession of the suspects, one cal. 22, one cal. 9mm, one 12-gauge ARMSCOR shotgun, two magazines, and ammunition.

Meanwhile, Maj. Gen. Laurence Mina, Commander of 5th Infantry Division, Philippine Army said that the military troops will always be available for any operations that will contribute to the success of the anti-criminality and anti-illegal drugs campaign of the PNP. “We will fully support law enforcement operations to prevent crimes in our society. Our troops are also trained to support the PNP and other Law Enforcement Agencies in their operations.” (5th ID)