Robbers hit on another pharmacy

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Wednesday, August 20, 2014


A ROSE Pharmacy branch in Barangay Pitogo, Consolacion lost P80,000 in cash to three men last Monday afternoon, barely two hours after the Three-Sixty Pharmacy heist in Barangay Bulacao, Cebu City.

The police said business establishments with insufficient security measures—such as armed security guards and closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras—are common targets of robbers.

The Consolacion police, in coordination with the Liloan Police Station, later arrested Rodolfo Caparoso in Barangay Yati, Liloan based on information from witnesses who allegedly saw him outside Rose Pharmacy around 2:30 p.m., the same time the robbery took place.

Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) Director Noli Romana, on the other hand, gave police personnel until today to arrest Leonardo Rama and Wendel Mendoza, who have been tagged in some robberies in the city.

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He said that if CCPO personnel would not meet the deadline, he will ask the Police Regional Office (PRO) 7 for help.

Senior Insp. Franco Rudolfo Oriol, chief of Consolacion Police Station, said Caparoso was allegedly carrying a .357 revolver, the same type of gun used in the heist.

Oriol said Caparoso, 30, is the alleged leader of a criminal group involved in robbery and carnapping in northern Cebu Province.

Caparoso denied the accusation but he admitted stealing some motorcycles before.

According to the Police Regional Office (PRO) 7, a daily average of 12 robberies occurred in Central Visayas in the first half of this year. A total of 2,249 robberies were recorded from January to June this year.

The Rose Pharmacy heist was carried by two men but Caparoso allegedly stood outside and acted as a lookout.

No guards

The police said Caparoso allegedly seized the mobile phones of four customers to prevent them from alerting authorities.

Oriol said robbers took advantage of the situation because there was no security guard at that time.

The pharmacy, he said, only hired one security guard who reports to work from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m.

The CCTV camera installed inside the pharmacy had not functioned in the last five days.

Shortly before the robbery, one of the suspects entered Rose Pharmacy to buy medicines. He got out and came back with another man who was armed with a gun. Both men wore sun glasses.

Meanwhile, the CCPO identified Rama and Mendoza as the ones who allegedly robbed Three-sity Pharmacy and LBC Escario Branch.

Romana said he understands the difficulty of arresting the two suspects who are constantly moving from one place to another.

The CCPO’s Theft and Robbery Section, Pardo Police and the City Intelligence Branch (CIB) are working together on the arrest of the two suspects.

CIB Chief Romeo Santander said he felt insulted that the robbers pulled off the heists in broad daylight.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 20, 2014.

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