PDEA-7 exec: e-biz firms empowered to stop drug traffickers from using firms’ services
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA-7) has anticipated that more businesses in Central Visayas, especially those involved in courier services, will be more empowered and much aware of the modus operandi of the drug personalities exploiting their services for illegal drug activities.
Leia Alcantara, PDEA-7 spokesperson, said that PDEA’s partnership with some e-commerce businesses was one of the keys to a successful anti-illegal drug campaign as partner institutions and organizations from the private sector were being empowered.
Alcantara said the empowerment could be seen in the capabilities of these businesses to identify their vulnerabilities and fortify their operations to avoid these drug syndicates from entering their businesses and taking advantage of their services.
Aside from empowering these businesses, PDEA would also want to target drug traffickers’ use of e-commerce in their illegal drug trades.
Based on PDEA’s statement, the agency had long seen the weaknesses of the mail and parcel system in the Philippines concerning smuggling of contrabands such as illegal drugs.
“The agency had successfully conducted more than 100 mail and parcel interdiction operations and seized millions of pesos worth of illegal drugs from 2013 to 2017. The popularity of e-commerce — the buying and selling of goods and services through internet-based platforms — further boosted the demand for courier services,” the statement said.
“In August 2020, 12 kilograms of shabu worth P81.6 million were seized in a courier service’s regional headquarters in Mandaue City, Cebu: large seizures of illegal drugs such as this, and the admission of several arrested suspects to using delivery apps to transport illegal drugs reinforced PDEA’s resolve to prevent the abuse of e-commerce platforms and courier services by drug traffickers,” PDEA said.
PDEA has partnered with e-commerce and courier services firms since last December 2020 to cut off the possible means of drug traffickers in getting the services of e-commerce and courier services firms and use these for their benefits.
The PDEA’s partner firms included Lazada, Shopee, Lalamove Philippines Inc. and Lala App Philippnes inc., and Wallstreet Courier Services Incorporated-popularly known as Ninja Van.
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