More cocaine bricks have been recovered from the seas of the Philippines, bringing the total number of such finds this month to ten.
Police today (Monday, February 25) announced the discovery of 36 blocks of the drug in waters off Davao Oriental and Nueva Ecija yesterday. The recovered drugs have an estimated value of 190 million pesos.
Also yesterday, police found 34 more bricks of cocaine off the waters of Surigao del Sur. In both cases, the drugs were reported to police by local fishermen.
As we have previously reported, 40 bricks were found off Dinagat Island and an even greater number off Surigao del Norte.
The first batch of cocaine was discovered on Tuesday, February 12, when a fisherman found 48 bricks with an estimated value of 250 million pesos.
Two days later, on February 14, police recovered 27 similar-looking blocks of cocaine in waters off Surigao del Norte.
The next day cops conducted a sea patrol along the town’s shore and recovered a further 13 bricks. This haul had an estimated value of 212 million.
Then, on February 16, another brick was found off Camarines Norte.
On February 18, another brick was found off Mauban town in Quezon Province.
Soon after the drugs began to be found, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency Director General Aaron Aquino suggested that the cocaine had been dumped as “diversionary tactics”.
“While all government forces are focused on operations to retrieve the floating cocaine, we believe drug syndicates may take the opportunity to smuggle shabu,” he said.
“They were willing to sacrifice 125 million pesos worth of cocaine to smuggle 11.15-billion worth of shabu. It is because the Philippines is not a cocaine-consuming country. The number one drug of choice here is shabu.”
It’s not the first time huge hauls of cocaine have been found off the Philippines. In January last year, cocaine worth $2.5 million washed up in Matnog, Sorsogon province. In this case, police said it had probably been jettisoned by a foundering ship.
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