Alfonso Lim, a former mayor of Lila town, on Wednesday was arrested for illegal trade of petroleum products after he was allegedly caught transporting butane canisters filled with liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) at a police checkpoint in Candijay.
It was the second time this year that Lim was apprehended for violation of Presidential Decree 1865, which requires a license from the government to sell petroleum products, due to alleged illegal possession and trade of butane canisters illegally filled with LPG.
According to PO3 Emmanuel Habas of the Candijay Police Station, Lim was driving a Mitsubishi L300 van, registered to one Alberta Torralba of Tagbilaran City, when he was stopped by police conducting Oplan Sita at around 7 a.m. on Wednesday.
Lim admitted that he had in his van butane canisters after police invited him to the police station as he refused to open his vehicle.
Habas said that they found 85 boxes each filled with 28 LPG canisters inside the van driven by Lim.
Butane canisters filled with LPG cost around P15 to P20 each in Tagbilaran City.
Lim was detained after he failed to show documents for the petroleum products in his possession.
He is set to be charged with violation of Presidential Decree 1865 on Thursday.
According to Habas, police flagged Lim down as they noticed the vehicle’s “dilapidated” license plate.
They questioned Lim on the strong odor coming from the vehicle but he told authorities that he only had mangoes on board.
Habas said that Candijay Police Station commander Chief Insp. Joseph Berondo decided to invite Lim to the station after they asked him to open his vehicle but he refused.
In January this year, Lim was arrested during simultaneous raids conducted at his house and warehouse in Tagbilaran City.
Operatives of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) and the Department of Energy (DOE) allegedly found P2.8 million worth of butane canisters at both places.
Lim posted bail in January and he is expected to do the same after his recent arrest, said Habas.
The late dictator Ferdinand Marcos in the 1970s signed PD 1865 which incriminates the sale or distribution of petroleum products for profit without license from the government.
The Bureau of Fire Protection in Tagbilaran City and the DOE have both warned against the use of LPG-filled butane canisters as these are highly combustible. (A. Doydora)