PDEA warns TNVS drivers vs becoming unwitting drug conduits

September 25, 2017 - 12:05 PM

MANILA, Philippines — Following the arrest of a man who allegedly sold drugs online and used transport network vehicle services in delivering narcotics, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) on Monday warned drivers of TNVS, including Grab and Uber, “to never allow themselves to be used as unwitting conduits” of illegal substances.

In a statement, PDEA Director General Aaron N. Aquino said that one Jovet Trance Atillano alias OJ, who was apprehended by authorities in a condominium unit in Mandaluyong City last September 19, “has hired the services of TNVS drivers in delivering illegal drugs concealed inside packages right at the doorsteps of his customers.”

“Before they know it, the drivers have become unwitting couriers of illegal drugs. We are urging TNVS drivers and operators to exercise due diligence to ensure that they will not be used to transport any contrabands,” he said.

“Drug syndicates have learned to utilize the mobile-based application of transport network companies to deliver their illicit goods. They will register using fictitious names and pre-activated SIM cards to avoid detection in case the delivery went amiss and intercepted by authorities. Unaware, the poor driver will likely suffer the dire consequences,” the PDEA chief added.

Aquino said PDEA had sought the assistance of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board and TNVS “to find ways to stop this new trend of drug trafficking.”