Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Olongapo Drug Smuggler escaped

Palace orders probe into escape of big-time drug smuggler
Malacañang on Friday ordered the Philippine National Police (PNP) and anti-drug agents to investigate how suspected big-time drug smuggler Anthony Ang was able to leave the country, despite a hold-departure order against him.

Radio dzBB quoted Press Secretary Cerge Remonde as saying that President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo had given the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), the PNP, and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) one week to come up with their report on Ang's escape.

Intelligence reports revealed that Ang successfully slipped out of the country after allegedly bribing authorities with P15 million. Unconfirmed reports also said that Ang was already on his way back to China.

Undersecretary Antonio Villar, chief of the Presidential Anti-Smuggling Group (PASG), refused to divulge which government agency helped Ang escape from the country. But Mrs. Arroyo vowed to punish any government official who would be found involved in Ang's escape.

Villar lamented how their three-day buy-bust operation against Ang had been put to waste. In June 2006, anti-drug agents seized a total of 744 kilograms of high-grade methamphetamine hydrochloride (shabu) worth about P5 billion in separate operations in Subic, Zambales.

Villar said that based on documents, the seized narcotics – some of them later found in a warehouse owned by Ang - apparently came from Vietnam and were bound for Taiwan via cargo ship F/B Shun Fa Xing.

Ang, who faces charges of drug trafficking and has a pending warrant of arrest – works for Hualong International Trading, a free port-registered company engaged in importing and transshipping imported cigarettes.

Ang – who has a Filipino wife – is said to also engage in the business of selling laptop parts and wine, and owns a local restaurant.

Cabinet Secretary Sylvestre Belo III said Ang’s escape was a big slap on the face of the government, which had been proclaiming to have stepped up its anti-drug campaign in the country. -Mark Merueňas, GMANews.TV

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