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People v. Dumagoy, GR 216753
PO3 Jimenea testified that a confidential informant (CI) informed him that a certain “Buboy,” later identified as appellant, was selling morphine. He relayed the information to PCI Lacerna, who instructed him to confirm the report. On the same day, the CI called up appellant to buy morphine; that appellant agreed to meet them near the gasoline station. Appellant arrived on-board a red motorcycle at the side of the gasoline station. The appellant talked with the CI and asked if he was the buyer of the morphine. The appellant showed him one vial of morphine and asked how much he intends to buy. He told him that he intends to purchase P3,000.00 worth of morphine, and the appellant informed him that the said amount was good for 20 vials of morphine. They then exchanged cell phone numbers and agreed to meet at noon the next day near Western Mindanao Command (WESMINCOM).
They returned to their office to inform PCI Lacerna about the agreement with the appellant. Briefing of the operation was held. During the briefing, he was given the buy-bust money, which was placed inside a white envelope, it was also agreed that the prearranged signal would be a “thumbs up” sign.
Then they meet the appellant in the agreed place. When the appellant asked for the money, he gave him the white envelope containing the marked money. Appellant in turn, took from his pocket the morphine placed inside a plastic bag. After checking if the 20 vials were indeed morphine, he immediately made a “thumbs up” sign. The police team immediately ran towards them to arrest the appellant.
Appellant contends that there was no valid buy-bust operation as he was allegedly instigated or induced to commit the crime by the CI.
Whether or not the buy-bust operation was valid.
Yes, There was a valid buy-bust operation. There is instigation when “the accused is lured into the commission of the offense charged in order to prosecute him.” On the other hand, “there is entrapment when law officers employ ruses and schemes to ensure the apprehension of the criminal while in the actual commission of the crime.” A buy-bust operation is a form of entrapment used to apprehend drug peddlers. It is considered valid as long as it passes the “objective test,” which demands that “the details of the purported transaction during the buy-bust operation must be clearly and adequately shown, i.e., the initial contact between the poseur-buyer and the pusher, the offer to purchase, and the promise or payment of the consideration until the consummation of the sale by the delivery of the illegal drug subject of the sale.”
In the instant case, there was a valid buy-bust operation as the prosecution was able to establish details of the transaction from the initial contact of the poseur-buyer and the appellant up to the consummation of the sale by the delivery of the morphine. The identities of the poseur-buyer and the appellant as the seller of the morphine, and the details of the procedure employed by the police operatives in conducting the buy-bust were clearly established by the prosecution. The fact that the poseur-buyer, through the CI, solicited morphine from appellant is not prohibited by law and does not render the buy-bust operation invalid as, under prevailing jurisprudence, “a police officer’s act of soliciting drugs from the accused during a buy-bust operation, or what is known as a ‘decoy solicitation,’ is not prohibited by law and does not render the buy-bust operation invalid.”