CJ Bersamin: Collaborate with Countries of Drug Traffic Origin and Intensify Efforts to Arrest Traffickers

October 3, 2019

Chief Justice Lucas P. Bersamin today underscored the need for the government to “collaborate with countries that are the origins of drug traffic” and to “intensify all efforts” to arrest all traffickers and pushers.

Speaking during the National Summit on Dangerous Drugs Law held this morning at the Manila Hotel, Chief Justice Bersamin said that since the traffickers have become ingenious and creative in smuggling drugs, all concerned government agencies must equal this ingenuity and creativity to battle the drug menace.

“All the countries throughout the world are being beset by the perennial drug problems. More and more, we become troubled by the seemingly endless ingenuity and creativity of drug suppliers and their minions in smuggling their dangerous products across national borders. Our alertness and quickness in frustrating such smuggling must be constant and unrelenting. We must collaborate with countries that are the origins of drug traffic in stifling the menace. We must therefore adapt to such ingenuity and creativity by training our law enforcers regularly and equipping them with sufficient and effective tools for the campaign to completely stop the delivery. We should also intensify efforts to arrest the traffickers and pushers,” Chief Justice Bersamin said.

He added: “It is high time for our response to the drug menace to be made stronger through the adoption of a robust system of communication, cooperation and coordination among all concerned agencies and offices, as well as of an operational legal framework to prosecute the traffickers and their minions.”

During the Pre-Summit Conference Workshop on Dangerous Drugs Law conducted by the Philippine Judicial Academy (PHILJA) at the PHILJA Training Center in Tagaytay City on September 6, 2019, the Chief Justice called on all participants to review the country’s drug policies and law enforcement capacity as he underscored that “the biggest challenge for us is how to remain relevant and responsive considering the creative ways drug traffickers evade the authorities.”

The Chief Justice said that today’s Summit will “bring on the same page every agency and office of the Government to respond to the need for a common front against the drug menace through the development and adoption of policies and procedures that render the handling of drug cases effective and efficient.” He said that the Pre-Summit brought representatives from the agencies pertaining to the Executive, Legislative and Judicial Branches of the Government to brainstorm and come up with solutions and responses to the country’s drug problem.

“I consider it highly commendable therefore that the parallel sessions held during the Pre-Summit on the major issues about chain of custody, plea bargaining, probation and rehabilitation have borne results that will be reported to this Summit by the Hon. [Court of Appeals] Justice Mario Lopez, Chair [of the PHILJA Criminal Law Department] and convenor of this Summit. I expect that such output will be submitted to the Supreme Court as well as to the Congress along with the recommendations that will be agreed upon and adopted during this Summit,” said the Chief Justice.