PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte has warned the South Koreans allegedly controlling the illegal drug trade and prostitution in Cebu province that they would get shot like ordinary criminals if they continued their illegal activities.
Following Police Chief Ronald dela Rosa’s remarks that a South Korean mafia could possibly be involved in the abduction and killing of businessman Jee Ick Joo, Duterte said the Koreans involved could not enjoy “special privileges” here just because they were foreigners.
“It’s strongest in Cebu. If you ask any [Cebuano] or if you go to Cebu for an investigative journalism you will find out,” Duterte told reporters on Saturday night.
“I’ve always heard from intelligence sources that in Cebu, with all due respect to the South Korean government, they’re the ones controlling drugs, prostitution.
“For those into the racket of prostitution, drugs and everything, kidnapping, you will be treated just like ordinary criminals.”
But Duterte emphasized the Philippines’ friendship with South Korea.
“I’m not condemning all Koreans. They’re always welcome here,” Duterte said.
“Korea is our friend. It has helped us in so many ways. I will not want to pick a quarrel just like [with] India,” Duterte said referring to his stand against the Indians engaged in usurious lending.
Jee’s death in the hands of scalawag cops had led to a halt in the anti-drug operations of the Philippine National Police and National Bureau of Investigation.
The President, meanwhile, tasked the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency and the military to continue his war on drugs after the police were deemed unfit for the job.
On Friday, Dela Rosa said the PNP had knowledge of the “competition within [the Korean] community” but he could not confirm it yet.
A joint probe team of the PNP and the National Bureau of Investigation were looking into it, he said.
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