25 of ‘Bakhaw 32’ flunk drug test

Most of the 32 persons arrested in a suspected drug den at Barangay Bakhaw, Mandurriao, Iloilo City flunked the drug test. (Jennifer P. Rendon)

By Jennifer P. Rendon

Majority of the persons arrested in the Jan 25, 2023 anti-narcotics operation in Barangay Bakhaw, Mandurriao, Iloilo City tested positive for illegal drug use.

Major Mary Grace Borio, Police Regional Office (PRO)-6 spokesperson, said the test conducted on 25 of the 32 suspects detected the presence of Methamphetamine and THC-metabolites, both dangerous drugs, in their urine samples.

Borio refused to name the persons who flunked the test.

On Saturday, members of the Regional Police Drug Enforcement Unit (RPDEU) 6 filed criminal charges against the 32 arrested suspects for violation of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

Captain Glenn Soliman, RPDEU-6 team leader, explained that it’s important to establish if a suspect is positive for drug use because it would prompt them to file a case for violation of Section 15 of RA 9165.

Under the said provision, “a person apprehended or arrested, who is found to be positive for use of any dangerous drug, after a confirmatory test, shall be imposed a penalty of a minimum of six (6) months rehabilitation in a government center for the first offense, subject to the provisions of Article VIII of this Act.”

Some of the suspects were charged for visiting a drug den, which violates Section 7 of the law, on top of illegal drug use.

Brothers Alony Leonor, 47, and Elmer Leonor, 37, and Jeric Jimena, 30, all residents of Barangay Bakhaw, were charged for violation of Sections 5, 6, 11, and 26 of RA 9165.

The three suspects are considered high-value individuals (HVIs) with Jimena on the Top 6 of the Regional Police Drug Enforcement Unit (RPDEU) 6’s target list.

While many persons were arrested, it was believed that others escaped by jumping from the window of the house, which served as a drug den and allegedly maintained by the Leonor brothers.