We observed the case filed against Dan August Racaza and Hermocillo “Henie” Macaraya, who were in that time, detained. Before testifying, the witness, Alvin Clemente, a PDEA agent who was part of the team assigned to handle the case, took an oath. The witness narrated the story and said an informant went to their office located in Arlandon Street, Cebu City, about a drug dealing operation happening in Sitio Tunga, Barangay Tanke, Talisay City, relating to Dan August Racaza and Henie Macaraya.
The latter was part of the PDEA Watch List containing a list of persons allegedly involved in drug trade but is yet to be confirmed. They put the accused under surveillance and planned an authorized buy-bust operation led by their team leader, Intelligence Officer 3 David Mark Maramba. Together with the informant, David briefed the team and Alvin was designated to be one of the poseur buyers. They prepared the things that will be needed for the operation like the money which was marked by Alvin’s initials. In June 21, 2012, they went to the area with 9 members including the witness.
He said Racaza was standing by the door when they arrived and Macaraya was at the ground floor. The informant introduced them as his co-workers and told Racaza they’d like to “power-up”. Racaza invited them in and showed them a plastic container with different sachets of pots and shabu. Alvin bargained the sachet that costs 180 pesos to 2 for 300 pesos. Racaza and Macaraya agreed and asked him to pick what he likes. He chose 2 sachets that seemed to contain more than the rest and handed the mark money to Henie. Alvin made a signal then the team arrived and arrested the suspects.
However, they fought back and a brief commotion ensued. David told the team to pull out. They recovered sachets from Racaza and another guy named Alot and the buy-bust money from Henie. These were under the custody of the witness after the operation and he marked it as “DAR-DBT”. I. General Observations The first thing we noticed about the court was its tight security. Everyone was searched thoroughly as they go inside. The place was like a maze with all its branches but there were clear instructions along the way for the people to locate their branch easily.
Physically, the walls need to be repainted and the lights were dim which made the hallways look scary. Branch 13 wasn’t so orderly and the prisoners were just in the sides, talking with their loved ones and just within reach by the audience and witnesses. There weren’t enough seats available for the people too. The witness was calm and attentive during the interrogation. He answered the questions directly and specifically. The judge was silent throughout the whole thing. He was writing but you can see he was really listening.
The prosecutor asked questions that are really related to the topic while the defendant was just quiet. II. Substantive Reaction Throughout the whole case, we noticed that there was a violation against the 1987 Philippine Constitution, particularly Article III Section II. We clearly saw how much the buy bust operation violated that section of the constitution. They, in a way, barged in the house of Racaza in a discreet manner and seized all of the drugs they possessed which is a violation to “unreasonable searches or seizures are inviolable”.
Yes, a drug possessed in an illegal manner is wrong in the eyes of the law, but the buy bust operation was also a violation since it hasn’t undergone due process of law. Conclusion We conclude that the 1987 Philippine Constitution should be faithfully followed and should not just be taken for granted. It wasn’t made just for it to be violated. It was made because it is for everyone’s common good and that they believed that that constitution would provide the betterment of our country and the citizens in it. If people would just violate it and get away with it so easily, the constitution wouldn’t be able to serve its ultimate purpose.