CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – Two men were arrested while their cargo was seized by police in Sitio Pahiron, Barangay Lumbia this city early Saturday morning (Nov. 9) for transporting more than 700 board feet of undocumented logs estimated at P391,953.20.
Arrested were Arnel Tabobo, 39, married, and Cristito Daugan, 40, both residents of Barangay Tignaploan this city. They transported 25 pieces of lauan (about 595.47 board feet) and seven pieces of Gmelina (about 155.64 board feet).
According to a police report, a light truck loaded with Lauan and Gmelina logs was intercepted by law enforcers at around 2:30 AM.
Major Evan Viñas, city police spokesperson, said the suspects failed to show permits from the environment agency when accosted by officers manning a checkpoint in Pahiron.
“They could not present the proper documents. That would make their cargo illegal,” he said in a phone interview.
He added the suspects will be facing anti-illegal logging charges and other related cases for the transport of the said logs.
Viñas also shared they are verifying reports that both Tabobo and Daugan have been transporting logs from other areas passing through the city’s hinterland villages.
Capt. Teodoro de Oro, Lumbia Police Station chief, said in a separate interview that the suspects refused to tell investigators where the logs came from, who are the owners, and where the cargo is headed.
“Arnel (Tabobo) told us he was just being paid to transport the logs, but he did not answer where these will be brought. He refused to tell us the whole story,” de Oro said.
He shared they have been receiving reports of the logging activities in the mountains that bordered Cagayan de Oro and Lanao del Sur.
When the police went with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the City Local Environment and Natural Resources Office to the hinterland barangays to investigate, the residents there told authorities the cutting of logs has been taking place in Lanao del Sur, near the city’s boundary, he said.
“If the logging activities are in Lanao del Sur, that’s not within our jurisdiction,” de Oro said, adding they will only make the arrest once suspects enter their area of responsibility. (davaotoday.com)