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Priest, 2 others busted in buy-bust in Paniqui

August 11, 2017 ·  By Mar T. Supnad for



Paniqui, Tarlac – An addict priest?

This was the question in the minds of a religious congregation in Cuyapo, Nueva Ecija, following a police buy-bust operation that resulted in the arrest of their priest and two other individuals in Barangay Poblacion Norte, Paniqui, Tarlac last Monday.

Superintendent Joel Mendoza, Paniqui police chief, identified the arrested as Randy Valdez, 35, a priest of the Iglesia Filipina Independiente (IFI or Aglipayan Church) in Cuyapo; and Mike Raven Quinto, 20, and Camille Franilla, 23, both of this town.

“When we accosted Valdez along with the two other suspects, I thought he (Valdez) was joking, or either high on drugs, when he introduced himself as a priest. But it turned out to be true, he is a priest of the Aglipayan church,” Mendoza said.

It turns out that Valdez, who is a native of this town, is the destined priest the Aglipayan Church in Cuyapo.

“The target of our entrapment were Camille (Franilla) and Quinto who are both on our Municipal Watchlist of Drug Personalities. It was Camille who received the r500 marked money from my policeman poseur-buyer but it was this person (Valdez) who handed the two plastic sachets of shabu. That’s why we arrested them,” explained Mendoza.

He added that Quinto, who yielded five sachets of shabu, has three siblings who are allegedly known drug pushers.


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