PALO, Leyte -- The Philippine National Police (PNP) has launched an investigation into the recent recovery of illegal drugs paraphernalia and other contrabands during clearing operations inside jail facilities in Eastern Visayas.

PNP Regional Director, Chief Supt. Gilberto Cruz said on Thursday they have to identify the owners of confiscated prohibited items and how these were brought inside prison cells.

“We have indicators. The next step is to identify these individuals, especially those who are allegedly involved in illegal drug trade inside the jail,” Cruz told reporters.

The police regional chief believes that there is illegal drugs trade in some prison complexes after the recovery of drug paraphernalia such as weighing scale, syringe, and improvised tooter during the surprise inspection. No shabu or marijuana were found.

Also seized during the Sept. 9 clearing operations were television, karaoke, mobile phones, laptop, tablets, DVD player, and mobile internet.

Joint personnel of the PNP, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency agents, and Bureau of Jail Management and Penology also found knives, improvised steel arrow, screwdrivers, hammer, chisel, hacksaw blade, wooden baton and steel bars.

The inspection also yielded playing cards, bingo card set, mahjong sets, chips, and tattoo kits.

What surprises Cruz was the confiscation of a drone at the Leyte Provincial Jail.

“We have already destroyed the items because we don’t want to be accused that policemen use confiscated items,” Cruz explained.

Jail facilities that yielded drug paraphernalia is the priority of their follow-up inspection.

The PNP will hold a dialogue with officials manning the jail facilities to discuss measures on how to make prison facilities drug-free. (PNA)