PALO, Leyte – Law enforcement operations in Eastern Visayas remain unhampered amid the health crisis as 11 most wanted persons (WNP) and 697 other law offenders were captured in 30 days, the Philippine National Police (PNP) reported on Thursday.

The continuous region-wide operations from March 11 to April 9, led to the arrest of four WNPs in Samar, three each in Leyte and Northern Samar, and one each in Southern Leyte and Biliran.

Their crimes ranged from rape, murder, robbery, theft, to violation of the Dangerous Drug Act, Police Regional Office (PRO) 8 director, Brig. Gen. Bernabe Balba said in a statement.

Some 250 wanted persons were captured for the crimes of rape, homicide, frustrated murder, qualified theft, robbery, alarm and scandal, grave slander, physical injury, malversation of public funds, direct assault, estafa, and disobedience to a person in authority.

Some of them also violated the Chainsaw Act, Coconut Preservation Act, Anti-Violence Against Women and their Children Act, the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Act, and other law violations.

The 30-day operation also resulted in the arrest of 24 illegal drug personalities, four of whom were considered high-value targets, and the confiscation of 72 pieces of heat-sealed plastic of suspected shabu and PHP12,000 used as mark money.

During the intensified patrol, 187 illegal fishers were apprehended. Confiscated from them were assorted fish and fishing paraphernalia worth PHP9,004,015.

Some 225 illegal gamblers were also captured with PHP43,140 in bet money and 27 illegal loggers with different sizes of lumber worth PHP151,178.

“Amidst this crisis, our campaign against any criminality continues and as we face this unseen enemy, I appeal to everyone to stay at home to save lives,” Balba said. (PNA)

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