MANILA — Anti-narcotics operatives arrested a former men’s magazine model and her cohort in separate buy-bust operations on Wednesday.
In a press conference in Quezon City on Thursday, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) officer-in-charge Gregorio Pimentel said Charlene “Cindy” Mecayer, 24, was nabbed at the Greenwood Executive Village in Barangay Sta. Ana. Taytay, Rizal for selling illegal drugs online.
Mecayer yielded PHP68,000 worth of shabu, three ecstasy tablets worth PHP4,500, PHP500 buy-bust money and various drug paraphernalia.
Aside from selling drugs, he said Mecayer even shows how to use the paraphernalia on social media.
Meanwhile, Mecayer’s alleged supplier Emily Patanao Dudley, 60, was arrested and yielded PHP340,000 worth of shabu in a follow-up operation in Pasay City.
“This is a new trend (and) challenge PDEA (is) facing today. Illegal drugs were now rampant with the said platforms, (online transaction and transport services),” Pimentel told reporters during the press briefing held at PDEA headquarters in Quezon City.
Aside from these, drug suspects are also using ‘deep webs’ and ‘dark webs’ for their transactions as these networks are not visible to search engines and require the use of an ‘anonymizing browser’.
PDEA has already informed e-commerce firm Lazada of the alleged selling of drug paraphernalia on its platform.
Pimentel, meanwhile, said PDEA plans to request the Land Transportation and Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to look into the use of ride-hailing and courier service apps for these illegal activities.
The suspects are currently detained at PDEA and will be facing charges for violating Sections 5 and 12 of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002. (ia/sovereignph.com/PNA)