DOJ clears ex-PDEA official of drug, gun ban complaints

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Former PDEA Chief official Lt. Col. Ferdinand Marcelino claims his arrest and detention was "borne solely by Director General Cacdac", who "has been historically irate" at his continued involvement in the government's anti-drug campaign. (file photo)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — Citing "inefficiency of evidence", the Department of Justice (DOJ) on Tuesday dismissed the drug and gun ban violation complaints filed against former Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) official Lt. Col. Ferdinand Marcelino and his Chinese companion, Yan Yi Shou.

The Philippine National Police (PNP) and PDEA claimed that respondents were in possession of illegal drugs but DOJ, through Senior Deputy State Prosecutor Theodore Villanueva, said the complaint was based only on the mere presence of the respondents at the crime scene.

Villanueva added evidence must be presented to show that Marcelino and Yan Yi had prior knowledge of the contents of the house that was searched. 

Marcelino was arrested in a shabu laboratory in Manila on January 21.

But he argued he has nothing to do with the drug trade and was there to confirm an intelligence report. He claimed he had a mission order and other documents to prove his claim.

Police Sr. Supt. Antonio Gardiola countered Marcelino's claim, saying that if it was a legitimate mission, there should be supporting documents and the case office should have Marcelino by that time.

Days after his arrest, Marcelino alleged he was "framed up", saying his arrest and detention was "borne solely by Director General (Arturo) Cacdac," who is the current PDEA chief. 

Marcelino and Yan Yi were detained at the PNP Custodial Center in Camp Crame, Quezon City, where other high-profile inmates are detained.

After four months in prison, on June 3, the Quezon City Regional Trial Court allowed Marcelino to post a bail of ₱1,000,000 for his temporary liberty.