Four Chinese and five Filipinos were arrested on Thursday after authorities raided an illegal drug laboratory hidden in a poultry farm in the Philippines, police said.
The laboratory, believed to have been financed by a Hong Kong-based drug lord, was found inside a warehouse in the poultry farm in the town of Ibaan in Batangas province, 87 kilometres south of Manila.
It was capable of producing 25 kilos or 125 million pesos’ (2.5 million dollars’) worth of methamphetamine hydrochloride in one day, according to Aaron Aquino, Director-General of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency.
Methamphetamine hydrochloride, locally known as shabu, is the most popular illegal drug in the Philippines.
The raid was organised after Chinese authorities tipped off Aquino’s office about “Chinese chemists flying in and out of the country” since September 2017.
The Chinese intelligence reports added that “the laboratory was organised by a Hong Kong-based drug kingpin-financier,” Aquino said.
The Philippine Government waged campaign against illegal drugs since President Rodrigo Duterte’s first day in office on July 1, 2016.
The campaign was criticised by foreign and local human rights groups due to high death toll in police operations and killings by alleged hired or vigilante killers.
Since the campaign started, police have killed more than 4,100 suspected drug pushers and users in anti-drug operations.