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Police sting operation nets drugs and gun

A police sting operation resulted in a Filipino sailor being snared with $200,000 worth of cannabis and a loaded gun after arriving in Bermuda on board a container ship.

Romonito Adlawan was put under police surveillance as soon as the Somers Isles berthed at #8 Dock in Hamilton on May 5 at just before 9am.

Officers watched on as the 37-year-old crewman left the docks at 9.15pm carrying a black knapsack on his back and walked west along Front Street to the car park across from Supermart.

Moments later he got into a car and detectives pounced. An unmarked police car forced the vehicle carrying Adlawan to a stop and he was taken to the ground when refusing to get out.

During a search of his person, officers found eight packets containing cannabis as well as a loaded revolver and later recovered $5,000 in US cash in his quarters on board the ship, which had originated in Florida.

Mr Adlawan was jailed for eight and a half years at Supreme Court last month after admitting importing the firearm and the cannabis as well as money laundering.

During the sentencing hearing prosecutor Maria Sofianos told the court: “As the officers were restraining Adlawan they felt bulky objects under his jacket.

“The officers searched Adlawan and found a black-taped package in his jacket. The Police officer conducted a further cursory search of Adlawan and found four additional black-taped packages in his jacket.

The officer asked Adlawan did he have any other packages and he replied: “There’s more in the bag”.

“The Police officer opened the bag and seized four additional black-taped packages; making a total of nine packages seized.”

Detectives then searched his quarters on board the container ship and found $5,000 in US currency that Adlawan said was payment from the previous drug pickup and delivery.

Ms Sofianos added: “Eight of the packages were found to contain cannabis with a total weight of 4,570.6 grams with a street value of $228,500

“One of the packages was found to contain a fully functioning 40 calibre Smith & Wesson semi-automatic pistol, a firearm magazine with 11 rounds of ammunition.”

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