Philippine police seize large stash of drugs in tea bags
BAGUIO, Philippines (AP) — Philippine police seized more than 500 kilogrammes (more than half a tonne) of suspected methamphetamine concealed in tea bags Wednesday and arrested a suspected Chinese drug dealer in a northern mountain resort city, police officials said.
The drug seizure in Baguio city had an estimated street value of four billion pesos ($74 million) and was one of the largest in recent years, officials said.
A drug syndicate apparently hid the suspected drugs, locally known as shabu, in Baguio, a popular tourism destination known for its mountain scenery and pine trees, and not in metropolitan Manila due to an ongoing anti-drugs crackdown in the capital region, Interior Secretary Benhur Abalos and police officials said.
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., who took office in June, has vowed to press on with his predecessor's crackdown against illegal drugs, which left thousands of mostly petty drug suspects dead, but said it would be done differently and focus more on rehabilitating drug dependents.
Under former President Rodrigo Duterte, more than 6,000 mostly poor suspected drug dealers were killed in reported clashes with law enforcers.
The widespread killings alarmed Western governments, including the United States, and sparked an International Criminal Court investigation as a possible crime against humanity.
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