NBI arrests 8 in Tarlac for ‘illegal’ quarrying

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The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has arrested eight persons and seized P3.9 million in heavy equipment and minerals from an allegedly illegal quarry site in Tarlac.

The NBI said Friday the suspects, whom operatives allegedly saw operating heavy machinery at a site in Barangay Telablanca, Concepcion, Tarlac, failed to present a government permit for quarrying.

The June 2 operation stemmed from information that quarrying and mineral processing were being conducted at the site without a permit from the Provincial Mining Regulatory Board of the Province of Tarlac and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources – Mines and Geosciences Bureau Region III (DENR-MGB), the NBI said.

The bureau said a list from the governor’s office showed there was no quarry permit issued for the said site. Another certification from the MGB showed there were only two mining tenements in the province, the NBI said.

Agents recovered from the alleged site manager a booklet of delivery receipts of “J2KAT Vibro Sand Trading,” which the NBI said was a “clear manifestation that they were selling the vibro sand.”

In a press statement, the NBI identified the subjects as Rene Santiago, Joseph Acuña, Norman Ibasco, Jeovy Mojello, Raul Laxamana, Ernesto Torres, Reynaldo Balajadia and Ryan Santos.

The arrested persons, as well as another who is still at large, face complaints for violation of the Philippine Mining Act of 1995, the NBI said./Stacy Ang

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