Burglars steal P500k worth of cigarettes

By Jennifer P. Rendon

Still unidentified burglars eyed rims of cigarettes in looting a local grocery store in Zarraga, Iloilo.

The incident was discovered around 5:30 am on August 25, as Chatie Grocery Store located at Barangay Jalaud Norte was about to open.

Analyn Solas, sister of store owner Catherine Teruel, arrived at the store and was greeted by a padlock-less roll-up door.

Upon checking, Teruel said they lost nine boxes of different brands of cigarettes with an estimated value of P500,000.

Lieutenant Johnny Arnad, Zarraga police chief, said the store has just replenished its merchandise when the burglary happened.

The robbers also took three mobile phones used in the store’s prepaid loading business and P7,000 cash.

The store, which is located on the roadside along a row of other establishments, has no closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras.

Arnad said adjacent stores also lacked CCTV cameras.

It appeared that there could be more than two suspects. They gained entry by using a bolt cutter to destroy the store’s padlock.

“We’ll be looking at the CCTV footages that might have captured the suspects before or after the robbery was committed,” Arnad said.

It was gathered that the store along that area had just been opened Tuesday after a one-week lockdown following a surge in Covid-19 cases in the area.