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Faeldon charged over P6.4-B shabu shipment

By JEFFREY G. DAMICOG

A criminal complaint was filed yesterday against former Bureau of Customs (BoC) commissioner Nicanor Faeldon over the shipment of P6.4-billion worth of narcotics.

The Philippine Drug Enforcement (PDEA) filed the complaint against Faeldon and 11 other BoC officials and personnel for conspiracy to import illegal drugs and protecting or coddling of drug traffickers in violation of Republic Act 9165, the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

The BoC officials who are also named as his co-respondents in the case are directors Milo Maestrecampo and Neil Anthony Estrella; intelligence officers Joel Pinawin and Oliver Valiente; Manila International Container Port district collector lawyer Vincent Phillip Maronilla; Faeldon’s finance, lawyer Jeline Maree Magsuci; and BOC employees Alexandra Ventura, Randolph Cabansag, Dennis Maniego, Dennis Cabildo and John Edillor.

The PDEA also included in its complaint importers and facilitators of the shipment, namely Chen Ju Long, Chen Rong Juan, Manny Li, Kenneth Dong, Mark Taguba II, Teejay Marcellana, Eirene May Tatad, Emily Dee, Chen I-Min and Jhu Ming Jyun.

Also named respondents were officials of Hong Fei Logistics Inc., which owns the warehouse where the drug shipment was seized – Genelita Arayan, Dennis Nocom, Zhang Hong, Rene Palle, Richard Rebistual and Mary Rose dela Cruz.

Apart from the drug charges, Faeldon and the 11 BoC officials and personnel were also accused of obstruction of justice under Presidential Decree No. 1829 for harboring or concealing, or facilitating the escape of the persons behind the drug shipment.

The 12 respondents were also charged with negligence and tolerance under Article 208 of the Revised Penal Code as well as for violating Section 3 of Republic Act 3019, the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

In its complaint, the PDEA blamed “incompetence and corruption of the Bureau of Customs officials” for the shipment of the 604 kilograms of methamphetamine hydrochloride, locally known as shabu.

“As can be culled from the proceeding discussion, the gross inexcusable negligence, manifest partiality, or bad faith of Commissioner Faeldon, Dir. Maestrecampo, Dir. Estrella, Pinawin, Valiente, Atty. Maronilla, Ventura, Cabansag, Maniego, Cabildo, and Editor made possible the importation of 602.279 kilograms of shabu and the evasion of Chen Ju Long from being arrested and prosecuted,” the PDEA stated.

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