MANILA – Fueled by reports that convicted drug lords are still able to continue their drug trafficking operations from inside prison, operatives of anti-crime and anti-drug organizations conducted a surprise inspection of the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) on Monday morning.
Seized from within the prison were illegal drugs, and various recreational items; such as a hot tub and a Playstation.
Justice Secretary Leila de Lima, along with 100 agents of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), Philippine National Police (PNP), led the operation at the prison’s maximum security compound.
Officials seized shabu (methamphetamine hydrochloride) from the jail cell of convicted drug lord, Peter Co. The agents also discovered what appears to be a roster of Co’s clients; with names and corresponding cash amounts listed on a piece of paper.
From one of the maximum security cells, agents confiscated a 48-inch flat screen television, a Playstation 4, a hot tub, and a dining set.
One of the inmates was likewise found to have P175,000 and over $2,000 in his possession.
“Heads will roll,” said De Lima to ABS-CBN News reporter Henry Omaga-Diaz, upon finding the items inside the jail cells.
In light of the situation, at least 19 convicted and powerful drug lords will be relocated to a different detention area within the facility. Their visiting rights have also been temporarily revoked, De Lima said.
Earlier investigative reports by ABS-CBN showed that aside from illegal drugs and recreational items, some high-profile inmates have also been able to bring in other contraband items; such as signal boosters, liquor, guns, golf carts, and fighting cocks.
Bureau of Corrections Director Franklin Jesus Bucayu said in an interview with the network that his organization is struggling with the issue of smuggled contraband items on account of “personnel issues” within the agency.