Bato makes false claim about shabu from China

Written by
University of the Philippines Journalism Department
Last modified
Wednesday, April 3, 2019 - 19:32
Screenshot of Bato during ANC interview

Noong araw bago pumasok si President Duterte, ang shabu ay hindi iniimport sa China. Ang shabu, ginagawa mismo dito sa ating bansa, because andito na ‘yung mga shabu laboratory. Whereas ngayon, Duterte administration, wala ka nang makitang shabu laboratory, ang nakikita natin, ang shabu, dumarating na lang galing sa ibang bansa. (Before President Duterte, shabu was not being imported from China. Shabu was made right here in the country, because there are already shabu laboratories here. Whereas now in the Duterte administration, you don’t see shabu laboratories anymore, what we see is shabu coming from other countries).

   — Bato dela Rosa, ANC’s Headstart, March 11, 2019

Contrary to Bato dela Rosa's claim, studies show the illegal drug methamphetamine hydrochloride or shabu has been flowing from China to the Philippines before President Rodrigo Duterte took office in 2016.

Maps by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), based on 2008 to 2012 reports from affected countries, belie the Senate bet’s claim.

Methamphetamine flows in East Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific, 2008-2012
Methamphetamine flows in East Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific, 2008-2012
Source: UNODC
Methamphetamine flows in East Asia, 2012 Source: UNODC
Methamphetamine flows in East Asia, 2012
Source: UNODC

The UNODC said:

Some countries, such as Indonesia, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines, have reported seizures of methamphetamine in 2012 that were perceived to have originated in China.

Information from the Philippine Dangerous Drugs Board was cited by the UNODC in a 2014 report:

From China, crystalline methamphetamine is reportedly trafficked to the Philippines and Australia… Law enforcement authorities in the Philippines report that Chinese drug trafficking networks operating from mainland China and Hong Kong (China), are involved in the trafficking of crystalline methamphetamine to the Philippines.

The Asia and Pacific Amphetamine Type Stimulants Information Centre run by the United Nations called the crystal methamphetamine trafficking from China to the Philippines a “major concern.”

The International Narcotics Control Strategy Report from the U.S. Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs also said China was still the country’s primary source of shabu bulk shipments in 2015:

Recent seizures indicate that higher purity methamphetamine from Mexico is potentially supplanting less pure Chinese-sourced methamphetamine. Despite this new trend, the most substantial source of methamphetamine remains bulk shipments from China, largely controlled by Chinese organized criminal groups.

References

Asia and Pacific Amphetamine Type Stimulants Information Centre (2014, December 1). Philippines. Retrieved from http://www.apaic.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=380&Itemid=811

ANC. [ABS-CBN News]. (2019, March 11). Headstart senatorial candidate Ronald Bato Dela Rosa [Video]. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/GG3YztFs3hI?t=278, watch from 4:38-5:02

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. (2013, April). Transnational organized crime in East Asia and the Pacific: A threat assessment [PDF file]. Retrieved from https://www.unodc.org/res/cld/bibliography/transnational-organized-crime-in-east-asia-and-the-pacific-a-threat-assessment_html/TOCTA_EAP_web.pdf

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. (2014, May). 2014 Global synthetic drugs assessment [PDF file]. Retrieved from https://www.unodc.org/documents/scientific/2014_Global_Synthetic_Drugs_Assessment_web.pdf

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. (2015, May). The challenge of synthetic drugs in East and South-East Asia and Oceania [PDF file]. Retrieved from http://www.apaic.org/images/SMART-PDF/ATS_2015_Report_low.pdf

U. S. Department of State. (2016). 2016 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report. Retrieved from https://www.state.gov/j/inl/rls/nrcrpt/2016/index.htm

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