IF the drug menace continues to worry the government and the Filipino people, including the ordinary citizens, blame it partly on the existence of three international drug syndicates operating in the Philippines.
They are the United Bamboo Gang (Bamboo Triad), 14K Triad (Hong Kong Triad) and the Sun Yee On Triad, according to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), the law enforcement arm of the Dangerous Drugs Board.
But it is certainly reassuring to note that PDEA, chaired by retired one-star police Gen. Aaron N. Aquino, has redoubled its efforts aimed at identifying and arresting the three drug syndicates’ financiers and members.
We can almost be sure that the agency, together with the Philippine National Police (PNP), headed by Director-General Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa, will succeed in dismantling said transnational drug trafficking organizations.
“These triads…are now responsible for much of the world’s drug trafficking and vice establishments,” said Aquino, who replaced former PDEA chief Isidro S. Lapeña of Class 1973 of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA).
“Hindi natin alam kung kailan malalansag ng gobyerno ang mga sindikatong ito pero siguradong hindi na sila makakaporma dahil laging nakabantay ang mga taga-PDEA at PNP,” said a well-meaning barangay official.
Records show that the Bamboo Triad was formed in the 1950s and gained notoriety for its involvement in almost every illegal activity in Taiwan, like prostitution, gambling, extortion, gunrunning and human trafficking.
The 14K Triad was founded in China in 1945 as an anti-communist task force. But four years later, it relocated to nearby Hong Kong following the nationalist defeat in mainland China.
On the other hand, the Sun Yee On Triad started in Hong Kong in 1919. Today, it is reportedly based in mainland China and Macau.
The 14K and Sun Yee On Triads are supplying Mexico’s dreaded Sinaloa Drug Cartel with raw materials needed in the manufacture of shabu, the so-called poor man’s cocaine.
PDEA and PNP should be given all the help that they need if the government is to succeed in dismantling all international drug rings operating in this graft-prone Southeast Asian nation.