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Riding-in-tandem nabbed for illegal drugs

By RPCRD, Police Regional Office 8
January 29, 2013

CAMP KANGLEON, Palo, Leyte – What is supposed to be a simple violation of the Helmet Law turned into a drug bust when two riding-in-tandem suspects were arrested by the police for possessing illegal drugs and paraphernalia.

Eastern Visayas top police official Police Chief Superintendent Elmer Ragadio Soria said that his men were just implementing the Police Integrated Patrol System (PIPS) when they saw the riding-in-tandem suspects who were not wearing protective helmets.

The duo, Melvin Villassin, 29, single of Mariveles Compound, Brgy Felipe, Ormoc City and his backrider Raymundo Castro, 29, married, lotto teller residing at Isla Verde, District 26, Ormoc City were accosted by PO1 Jonas Etis and PO1 Sergie Sabuya at the corner of Ebony and Juan Luna Streets, Public Market Compound in District 1, Ormoc City while the policemen were conducting roving patrol on Friday afternoon.

“The police officers approached the two for the Helmet Law violations but they noticed Castro nervously holding a blue plastic box and a tin foil,” Soria informed.

Suspecting that the subjects were in possession of illegal items, the police officers requested assistance from Brgy. Chairman Jerome Manago and Brgy. Kagawad Ramel Dafon and called Police Station 1 of Ormoc City Police Office on the matter and in turn contacted media man Roberto Dejon and Ms. Rita Pidoy of the Department of Justice.

Castro was requested to open the plastic box in the presence of above witnesses wherein it was found out that the box contained a transparent heat-sealed sachet containing white crystalline substance suspected to be “shabu”, 16 pieces cut tin foils and 2 lighters.

The suspects were immediately brought to the police station for further investigation while the confiscated items were brought to the crime laboratory for examination. Appropriate charges are being prepared against them.

"The public should be vigilant against the modus operandi of these riding-in-tandem suspects since recent crime incidents in the country involve motorcycle-riding criminals including transporting illegal drugs,” the regional director added.

The Helmet Act of 2010 or RA 10054 strictly requires motorcycle riders, including drivers and backriders, to wear standard motorcycle helmets while riding in any type of road or highway. Said helmet shall pass with the specifications of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to include the Philippine Standard (PS) or Import Commodity Clearance (ICC) under the DTI-Bureau of Product Standards’ (BPS) Product Certification Scheme.