MANILA — Senator Panfilo Lacson on Tuesday slammed a San Juan City court for failing to order the immediate destruction of some 890 kilos of shabu seized December last year.
The issue was brought up during the resumption of the Senate panel hearing into the PHP 6.4 billion worth of shabu from China seized last May.
In an interview with reporters after the hearing, Lacson said the law is clear that there is a timeline to be followed when it comes to destroying seized illegal drugs.
“So kung December pa na-seize sa San Juan at hanggang ngayon di pa destroyed at matagal nang filed sa court, may problema talaga sa judge (If the drugs were seized in San Juan last December and until now they haven’t been destroyed although it has long been filed in the court, it looks like there really is a problem with the judge),” Lacson said.
Lacson earlier said that within 24 hours upon seizing illegal drugs, it should be sent to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) for testing. The result should be released within 24 hours.
On the other hand, within 72 hours, the court should conduct an ocular inspection. PDEA will then be tasked to proceed with destruction within 24 hours.
Lacson, however, said it was too early to predict the reason why it took long for the judge to decide on the order to destroy the illegal drugs.
Senator Richard Gordon, chair of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, has also invited the San Juan City judge involved to attend the Senate hearing next week.
“’Di rin natin alam ano ang reason niya. Baka nagkasakit. Kaya tama rin ipatawag ng Blue Ribbon para marinig ang side niya (We don’t know what his reason is. He might have been sick. That’s why it’s right that the Blue Ribbon Committee summons him to allow him to explain his side),” Lacson said.