Three Pinays in drug case seek shorter jail term

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THREE Filipino tourists who were found guilty of conspiring to bring in to Hong Kong some $2.5-million worth of cocaine in 2015 were seeking a lower sentence. The three – Shirley Chua, Remelyn Roque, and Ana Loella Creus – were set to be sentenced on Jan. 18 by High Court Judge Audrey Campbell-Moffat.

Mitigating, the counsels of the three told the court that the Filipinos gave statements to the Philippine Consulate General that led to the arrest in 2015 of Rufus Katumba, a Uganda national, and his Filipino common-law wife Marilyn Ramos. The court was also given a letter from the PCG, which stated that the statements given by Chua, Roque, and Creus helped in the arrest of Katumba and Ramos.

News reports said that when Katumba and Ramos were arrested in Laguna in October 2015, some 10 kilos of cocaine, and 10 kilos of methamphetamine hydrochloride were found in their home. The illegal drugs seized were estimated to have a street value of P20 million. Judge Campbell-Moffat, however, asked why “Nora”, who was the contact of the three Filipinos was not arrested. “I want to know what they have said because Nora appears to got off scot-free. I suspect that nobody said much about Nora,” Judge Campbell-Moffat said.

A Newton inquiry, where the three defendants would be questioned in the witness box, would be held on Aug. 20. Meanwhile, the Filipinos’ counsels told the court they would get in touch with the
PCG so they could get the record of the statements given by the three regarding Katumba and Ramos. In November, a jury of seven members voted unanimous and found Chua, Roque and Creus guilty.

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