BUSTED FOR DRUGS. Agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency–Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao account the “shabu” seized from slain drug peddler Alex Usman in Cotabato City following a shootout Monday afternoon (June 20, 2020). Two of Usman’s accomplices (center in handcuffs) surrendered peacefully. (Photo courtesy of PDEA-BARMM photo)

COTABATO CITY – A drug suspect was killed while two others were arrested after anti-narcotics agents engaged the group in a shootout during a drug sting operation Monday afternoon.

Director Rogelito Daculla of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (PDEA-BARMM) on Tuesday identified the slain suspect as Alex Usman.

Usman reportedly operated a drug den in Barangay Rosary Heights 7 where his clients hold pot sessions frequently.

Prior to the entrapment operation, Daculla said Usman was subjected to a month-long surveillance operation by police and PDEA operatives.

Backed by elements of the Army's 99th Infantry Battalion, PDEA agents were about to arrest Usman after handing over PHP102,000 worth of shabu to a poseur buyer at 4 p.m. when he opened fire toward the approaching law enforcers.

“This prompted the law enforcers to return fire that led to Usman’s death,” Daculla said, adding that two of Usman’s companions opted to peacefully surrender.

Charges are being prepared against the suspects. (PNA)