Couple nabbed in another motel drug bust

By Jennifer P. Rendon

A couple was arrested in yet another anti-illegal drugs operation on a motorist hotel or motel in Arevalo, Iloilo City.

Police identified the duo as Wynnlee Jaena, 49, of Barangay Democracia, Jaro, Iloilo City and Era May Calopez, 23, of Barangay North Baluarte, Molo.

Members of the Iloilo City Police Office-City Drug Enforcement Unit (ICPO-CDEU) and Iloilo City Police Station 6 arrested the suspects after Jaena allegedly sold a sachet of suspected shabu for P8,000.

Lieutenant Colonel Antonio Benitez, Jr., CDEU chief, said Calopez was with Jaena when police operatives barged inside their room in a motel at Barangay Sto. Niño Sur, Arevalo.

But the two denied that they were in a romantic relationship.

Benitez clarified that the duo was dressed when they entered the room.

Police later recovered inside their room 17 more sachets of suspected shabu, a belt bag, a homemade caliber .22 revolver with five ammunitions, an Android phone, two lighters, a weighing scale, a bundle of empty plastic sachets, P3,900 cash, and a piece of rolled aluminum foil.

Benitez said the seized drugs weighed around 120 grams and were valued at P816,000.

While Calopez is not on the police watchlist, Jaena is considered a “high value individual (HVI).”

He was arrested in a drug bust in 2014 in Jaro district. After six years, he was released from jail after availing of a plea bargaining agreement.

Lately, police received information that Jaena was again engaged in the illegal drug trade.

It was further verified after another person arrested for drug peddling claimed that Jaena was a supplier. The suspect claimed that Jaena sourced his supply from a distributor in Roxas City, Capiz.

“We monitored him for two months. He doesn’t usually stay in one place or used different pickup points,” Benitez said.

Apart from motels, cops claimed that Jaena also sold drugs in resorts and hotels.

During his arrest, Jaena told policemen that his blood pressure escalated.

But Benitez said his blood pressure was normal when checked.

The suspects are now detained and will be charged for violation of Republic Act 9165 (Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002) and RA 10591 (Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act).

Prior to Jaena and Calopez, several persons were also collared in drug busts in motels or hotels.

John Alvin Palomar, 44, of Zone 2, Barangay Bakhaw, Mandurriao, Iloilo City, was arrested at 9:05 p.m. on June 15 while billeted at Sofia Lodge in Barangay Infante, Molo. He yielded more than P1.2 million worth of suspected shabu.

On May 31, six persons, including two women, were nabbed in a drug sting in a hotel in City Proper district, Iloilo City on May 31. More than P1.4 million worth of purported shabu were recovered in the operation.