MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) has named the United Bamboo Gang (Bamboo Triad), 14K or Hong Kong Triad, and Sun Yee On – three of the most powerful drug trafficking organizations in the global illegal drug market – as the country’s biggest shabu suppliers.
PDEA director general Aaron Aquino, as quoted by spokesman Derrick Carreon, said these triads found the Philippines as both a market and transshipment point for shabu because of the country’s vulnerability, particularly its porous borders and vast coastlines that make their movements almost undetected.
“These three drug triads are making the Philippines their playground. They are resorting to drug smuggling, either finished product or raw materials, and cook shabu in high seas because of the dismantling of several major shabu laboratories offshore lately,” the PDEA chief claimed.
PDEA has tightened its guard both in airports and seaports to intercept the trafficking and transit of drugs in the country.
According to Aquino, the Taiwan-based Bamboo Triad was formed in the 1950s and its members are engaged in illegal activities that include prostitution, gambling, extortion, gunrunning, human trafficking and drug smuggling on a worldwide scale.
It operates in the US, Canada, Britain, France, Australia and in every country in Asia, the Philippines included.
The 14K triad operates from Hong Kong while the Sun Yee On triad operates mainly from mainland China. Although both are considered arch rivals with a propensity for violence, PDEA claimed that both are supplying Mexico’s Sinaloa drug cartel.