THE National Police Commission (Napolcom) charged the five Cagayan de Oro City Police Office (Cocpo) policemen accused of the October 23, 2016 kidnapping of Enrique Fernandez III, with grave misconduct.
The commission's central office ordered the Napolcom-Northern Mindanao to hear the administrative case of the accused, Police Senior Inspector Ereneo Ramirez, Police Officer 3 (PO3) Alejandro Ubanan, SPO2 Jojo Lim, SPO1 Alaindelon Tacubao, and PO2 Sangkula Hussein.
"Humana ang pre-charge evaluation ug nakita nga nay (The pre-charge evaluation is done and we found) probable cause to charge them for grave misconduct," said Lawyer Robert Lou Elango, chairman of the Police Regional Appellate Board of Napolcom-Northern Mindanao.
Elango said the order of the commission to hold the trial at the Napolcom regional office came last week.
Personnel of the Napolcom-Northern Mindanao on Thursday, June 8, served the summon against the accused at the city jail in Lumbia village, Cagayan de Oro City, where they have been detained.
Elango said the five policemen were given 10 days to answer the charges before the commission sets the schedule for the preliminary hearing.
He said the trial may last five months before the commission resolves the case.
Elango said the accused have yet to file their counter affidavits as of Tuesday, June 13.
The chief of the Napolcom's regional appellate board said the five policemen will be booted out permanently from the police service should they be found guilty for the grave misconduct.
"Maximum penalty sa grave misconduct is dismissal from service. Ang hearing diri himoon sa office. Pwede sila or ang ilang abogado moanhi (The hearing will be held in this office. They can personally come or their lawyers)," Elango said.
An eye witness was presented in court at the hearing of the criminal case on Tuesday, face-to-face with the five accused policemen.
Lawyer Rey Raagas, a member of the prosecution panel, said the court would conduct an ocular inspection at the crime site on June 22 to check the position of the eye witness when the kidnapping happened.
"Mag-inspection mi para maklaro sa korte ang description aha ang lugar sa witness aha siya dapit ug aron masuportahan iyang statement (We will inspect the crime site so that the court can clarify the witness’ description of the place he had been and to justify his statement)," Raagas said.
The next hearing for the criminal case against the five policemen is set on August 8.