PNP, DENR apprehend illegal forest products
The South Exit Monitoring Station in Calitlitan, Aritao, Nueva Vizcaya and members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) jointly intercepted a conveyance loaded with undocumented forest products on Feb. 5, this year at the Boarder Control Point, Barangay Tactac, Santa Fe, Nueva Vizcaya.
An Isuzu Forward Van-Wing Truck with plate number XPT116 loaded with undocumented Narra flitches or lumbers was apprehended with a volume of 2,975.333 bd.ft. and estimated value of more than 1 million pesos.
Ronald Demate y Guillermo, 47, truck driver and a resident of San Agustin, San Miguel, Bulacan was arrested and is now under the custody of Santa Fe Police Station for further investigation.
The apprehended truck and lumber are now under the care of the Cagayan Valley Product Monitoring Station (CAVAPROM) in Aritao which conducted hot pursuit operation chasing the conveyance up to Sta. Fe town.
The said conveyance was originated from the province of Apayao in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR).
It can be recalled that on Jan. 18, this year, police operatives in Bambang, Nueva Vizcaya intercepted a 10-wheeler Isuzu Giga Dump Truck loaded with illegal forest products worth 2 million pesos, originated from Paracelis, Mountain Province in the Cordilleras.
With the series of apprehended hot lumbers starting in the last quarter of CY 2022, the forest protection officers assigned at the CAVAPROM led by Jay Marshal Jasmin, supervising ecosystems management specialist and checkpoint team leader, have committed to be more vigilant in manning the checkpoint in collaboration with the law enforcement agencies in the province.
Regional Executive Director (RED) Gwendolyn Bambalan of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Region 2 mentioned that an initial meeting among the REDs of Regions 1, 2, 3, and CAR was chaired by the DENR Undersecretary for Field Operations who also directed the strengthening of inter-regional collaboration among the regions in intensifying surveillance operation and monitoring of forest protection and law enforcement initiatives.
Earlier, the DENR Assistant Secretary for Field Operations has instructed the regional environment chief to submit recommendations as to the proposed convergence meeting on forest protection to be led by the Office of the Assistant Secretary.
Meanwhile, the Regional Environmental Law Enforcement Council chaired by Director Bambalan will meet officials of the different law enforcement agencies and other stakeholders to discuss strategic plans to curb illegal activities passing through the region.
The illegal transport of timber and other forest products is punishable under Section 77 of Presidential Decree No. 705 as amended by Executive Order No. 277, s. 1987.#