Two young pushers were arrested by elements of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) after selling 60 pieces of suspected ecstasy capsules to a PDEA agent on August 10, 2011, in a gasoline station along North Luzon Expressway (NLEX).
PDEA Director General Undersecretary Jose S Gutierrez Jr. identified the suspects as Samuel A. Hernandez, single and a 27 year-old resident of 27 Bangkal St., Makati City; and Pinky S. Tashi, a 20-year old Filipino-Japanese single-mom of Short Horn St., Project 7, Muñoz, Quezon City.
Gutierrez said the arrest of the two suspects was the result of OPLAN: SHIELD orchestrated by PDEA Regional Office 3 (PDEA RO3).
The confiscated capsules were turned over to PDEA Laboratory Service (PDEA-LS) for laboratory examination. The chemistry report on the specimen yielded negative to Methylenedioxymetamphetamine (MDMA), or ecstasy, but
tested positive for the presence of 43 grams of Midazolam, another dangerous drug. Midazolam is included in the in the Schedule IV of the United Nations convention on Psychotropic Substances as enumerated in Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.
Midazolam belongs to the benzodiazepine family with hypnotic, anesthetic and sedative properties similar to the effects of barbiturates and diazepam. Benzodiazepines are commonly abused in combination with alcohol.
Hernandez and Tashi now face charges for selling illegal drugs in violation of Section 5, Article II of RA 9165. They are presently detained at the PDEA RO3 detention facility in Camp Olivas, San Fernando, Pampanga. Evangeline DJ Almenario, Chief, Public Information Office, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency