Two senior citizens were sentenced to life imprisonment for selling prohibited drugs in Bacolod City, while another one got a maximum of 17 years and eight months of imprisonment, for possession of shabu.
Executive Judge Raymond Joseph Javier of the Bacolod Regional Trial Court Branch 52 meted life terms and a fine of P500,000 each for Alexander Guanzon, alias Nene, and Gilberto Aplasca, alias Toto, for violation of Section 5, Article II of RA 9165,also known as the Comprehensive Drug Act of 2002.
Court records show that Guanzon, 60, was arrested on Nov. 10, 2011 in Purok Aguho, Brgy. 8, Bacolod City, for selling 2.04 grams of shabu to police poseur-buyer , PO3 Ivan Inoperio, in exchange for P1,000 in marked money.
Aplasca, 62, on the other hand, sold 0.159 gram of shabu to police poseur buyer , PO1 Joebel Dela Peña,on Feb, 27, 2013, at Purok Mapalaron, Brgy. 22, also in Bacolod City, the court was told.
Guanzon and Aplasca both claimed that they were arrested by police officers for no reason at all.
Javier, however, said that the defense of denial, advanced by the accused persons, cannot prevail over positive and categorical statements of prosecution witnesses, PO3 Inoperio and PO2 De la Pena, pointing to them, as authors of the crime charged.
The defense of the accused is anchored principally on denial, which cannot be given credence, he added.
Javier also found Esbert Salanap guilty for violation of Section 11, Article II of RA 9165, and sentenced him a prison term of 12 years and eight months to 17 years and eight months.
At the same time, he ordered Salanap to pay a fine of P300,000.
Salanap was arrested on Aug. 24, 2014 in Purok Boulevard in Brgy. 14, Bacolod City, for having in his possession 0.016 gram of shabu.
On the other hand, Javier acquitted Danilo Aplasca for violation of Section 11, Article II of RA 9165, for failure of the plaintiff to prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt.
Aplasca, alias Toleloy, was arrested on Sept. 24, 2006, in Purok Mahigugmaon, Brgy. 22 in Bacolod City, for allegedly having 14 plastic packs of marijuana fruiting tops, weighing 65.82 grams in his possesion.
The arrest of Aplasca stemmed from the implementation of a search warrant issued by Judge Napoleon Diamante, at his residence in Brgy. 22, Bacolod City.
While the body search on Aplasca yielded a negative result, his wife, Sarah, surrendered 14 big plastic sachets containing marijuana to a barangay captain, court records show.
Javier noted that “crucial element in the criminal cases for illegal possession of dangerous drugs, the corpus delicti, was not proven”.
Accused must then be acquitted based on reasonable doubt due to the broken chain of custody over the dangerous allegedly recovered from him, the judge added.
With reasonable doubt as to the authenticity of the corpus delicti; the acquittal of accused for the offense charged is, thus, in order, Javier said.
He ordered the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology to release Danilo Aplasca, while also directing BJMP to immediately transfer Salanap, Gilberto Aplasca and Guanzon to the National Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City, Metro Manila, for service of their respective jail terms.* GPB
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