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5 drug suspects killed in clash with QC cops

Five drug suspects were killed while another one was wounded when they engaged cops in a shootout during a buy-bust operation around 12:17 a.m. yesterday in Quezon City.

Quezon City Police District (QCPD) director Senior Supt. Guillermo Eleazar said they have yet to establish the identities of the suspects who shot it out with anti-drug operatives of Batasan Police Station on Springfield St. in Kampo, Barangay Payatas.

Meanwhile, police identified the wounded suspect as Jusrel Harold Arevalo, 29, a construction worker, of Barangay Batasan.

Eleazar said 15 police operatives conducted a drug sting against the suspects after learning of rampant illegal drug activities in their community.

However, the suspects reportedly sensed the presence of the lawmen, prompting them to draw their respective handguns and opened fire at the cops, according to police report.

The lawmen retaliated, hitting the six suspects. Five of them were declared dead on arrival at East Avenue Medical Center (EAMC) and Quezon City General Hospital.

Arevalo is still confined at the EAMC and charges are being prepared against him, the QCPD chief said.

Police recovered from the crime scene a .38-caliber revolver loaded with five bullets, four .45- caliber pistols, spent shells from .45-caliber pistols and M-16 rifle; and an empty magazine of .45-caliber pistol.

Last Sunday, the QCPD also arrested eight suspects in separate anti-illegal drugs operations in the villages of Bagong Silangan, St. Peter, Bago Bantay, Greater Fairview, and Tatalon.

QC police records show that a total of 47 drug suspects have been killed while 644 persons arrested in the city since July 1. (VANNE ELAINE P. TERRAZOLA)