THE National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) has delayed the deployment of over 650 rookie cops in order for them to undergo "retraining and refresher courses," a police official said.

“Dito sa NCRPO, in our own little ways, ‘yung ating mga kapulisan lalo na mga PO1 bago natin dini-deploy, ni-retrain na natin. 'Yung 650 na for deployment, hindi muna dineploy, ni-refresh natin, niretrain, saka ‘yung values formation just to make sure ‘yung pag-integrate nila sa field units maayos,” NCRPO chief Oscar Albayalde said, amid several controversies involving policemen.

In the NCRPO alone, Albayalde said it is investigating 167 police officers for their alleged involvement in illegal activities, particularly extortion and illegal drugs.

“Maraming ongoing admin cases dito sa NCRPO, maraming kaso pero mabagal lang ang proseso dahil kulang ang personnel ng legal service natin,” he said.

The PNP has been under fire after several policemen were tagged in the so-called “tokhang for ransom,” where cops allegedly use the PNP’s “Oplan Tokhang” to extort money from suspected drug personalities.

Teresita Ang-See of Movement for Restoration of Peace and Order (MRPO) said there are at least 11 cases of "tokhang for ransom" reported to them, adding that all victims are Chinese nationals.

She said the victims were forced to pay to avoid any drug-related cases.

“Unfortunately all of the victims paid up. Behind these are groups involving rogue Manila policemen. Others claimed agents of the National Bureau of Investigation were involved, but we do not know if they are really NBI agents. The other group specializes in procuring search warrants and instead of searching, they demand ransom from the victims,” Ang-See said.

The first high-profile case of alleged "tokhang for ransom" was the abduction and killing of South Korean businessman Jee Ick-joo by policemen assigned at the PNP Anti-illegal Drugs Group. Ick-joo was reportedly killed inside Camp Crame. (SunStar Philippines)