Suspect caught snatching on video is nabbed in Cebu City buy-bust

By: Pegeen Maisie M. Sararaña - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | August 05,2022 - 08:45 PM

Here’s a screenshot of the viral video of a nurse going after a snatcher along Jones Avenue in Cebu City last July 7, 2022. | screengrab from iFM video

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The man, who was caught on camera last month as he tried to snatch the cellphone of a nurse along Jones Avenue, Cebu City, was arrested today, August 5, in a buy-bust operation in Capitol Site this city. 

Junior Lapina, 31, of Barangay Tisa, Cebu City admitted that he was the man on the motorcycle, who tried to snatch the cellphone of the nurse that day, said Police Major Nolan Tagsip, chief of Abellana Police Station.

Lapina told police that he engaged in snatching so that he could get money to buy drugs.

Tagsip said that Lapina escaped from his snatching victim last July 7, but they caught him today, August 5, after a tedious intelligence monitoring leading to the buy-bust operation.

In the buy-bust operation at past 4 p.m. today, August 5, Lapina was caught with 25 grams of suspected shabu and an unlicensed .38 caliber revolver. 

Tagsip said the illegal drugs confiscated from Lapina had a market value of P170,000.

He also said it was later that Lapina also admitted to the July 7 snatching incident.

In the video of the snatching attempt, which was shared first by iFM and went viral online, the nurse managed to chase, jump and ride at the back of the motorbike of the fleeing snatcher. There was then a struggle for control of the motorcycle, which eventually crashed at the side of the island of the road.

The nurse got his cellphone back, but the snatcher managed to get on his motorcycle and escaped.

The victim then went to the Abellana Police Station to have the snatching incident blottered.

Police Major Tagsip said that the tedious intelligence monitoring led to the successful buy-bust operation.

Tagsip said they conducted a series of follow up operations to track down and monitor the whereabouts of the suspect, whom they later contacted and who agreed to meet today with an undercover policeman posing as a buyer of illegal drugs.

Tagsip also said that they later found out that Lapina was also arrested in 2018 for illegal drugs.

Lapina was detained at the Abellana Police Station pending the filing of charges for possession and selling of illegal drugs and for illegal possession of a firearm.


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