Police arrest 10 over ‘hot’ lumber, illegally-caught fish

Three separate operations in support of special laws led to the apprehension of 10 persons who were caught in possession of illegally-caught fish and illegally-cut lumber last week.

Last Jan. 25, 2020 at 4 A.M., joint elements of the Virac police station and the Catanduanes 1st Provincial Mobile Force Company (PMFC) arrested a 44-year old porter, Rommel Sarmiento Avila, a resident of San Vicente, who was caught in the act of transporting undocumented mahogany and narra flitches at a mountainous area of the coastal village.

He was placed in custody along with the lumber, which had a total volume of 138.49 board feet and an estimated market value of P13,289.

Later that afternoon at 4:45 P.M., seven persons were apprehended by joint elements of the Caramoran police station and 1st PMFC for possession of an undetermined volume of illegally sawn narra logs at Sitio Minabobo in Milaviga.

The suspects were identified as Mark Allen Fuentes, 18, farmer Joseph Isorena, 23, abaca stripper Loreno Correo, 33, Junie Isorena, 21, Noriel Longamin, 19, Jobert Evangelista, and Salvador Isorena, 20, who will face a criminal charge for Presidential Decree 705 (Revised Forestry Code of the Philippines).

Just eight hours later in Datag, San Andres, personnel of the town police led by Capt. Emsol Icawat flagged down the topdown tricycle of fish vendor Sandy Zuñiga, 36, of Dariao, Caramoran, and Jerry Interior, 31, of Tabugoc, Pandan, while in the act of transporting illegally caught fish locally known as “danoy.”

A case for violation of Republic Act 10654 will be filed against the duo over the fish weighing a total of 321 kilograms and with an estimated market value of P48,150.

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