DAVAO CITY, Philippines – A local official from the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and two others were arrested in a drug buy-bust operation at a high-end subdivision here Sunday, September 3.

The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Region 11 said they were conducting more than a year of casing and surveillance on Fatima Daud Baliwan, a village chief in Northern Kabuntalan, Maguindanao town.

Baliwan, 44, is allegedly the leader of the notorious “Baliwan Drug Group” in ARMM. A president of the Association of Barangay Councils in the region, she was arrested with her son and a car agent.

PDEA said the suspects were arrested in Langka Lane, Woodridge Subdivision in Maa here “for conspiring with each other in selling three medium sachets more or less 50 grams of suspected methamphetamine hydrochloride commonly known as “shabu” with a street value of P600,000” to operatives who acted as buyers.

Authorities confiscated a unit of a cellular phone and the buy-bust marked money bill, and a Toyota Grandia with plate number LGJ 155.

This is not the first time Baliwan was arrested in an anti-illegal drug operation. In February, she and her son were also arrested by PDEA and police in Cotabato City.

The suspects are now awaiting charges for violations of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002. If found guilty, Baliwan will be disqualified from holding any public office. (davaotoday.com)

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