WITH the growing number of dismissed drug cases, the Police Regional Office (PRO) 7 will tap the reviewing committee to determine whether a syndicate is behind the junked cases.

Regional Director Noli Taliño said there are delaying tactics in the process of filing of charges.

“They can talk to the complainant, they can settle the case so that when they’re okay, that’s the time they will surface. The case will be dismissed because they fixed it with the complainant,” Taliño said in Tagalog.

However, some administrative cases from last year were not resolved.

“Our objective here is to have successful cases so that they won’t get dismissed,” Taliño said.

The Regional Investigation and Detective Management Branch (RIDMB) 7 and the Regional Internal Affairs Service (RIAS) 7 are tasked to expedite the cases.

The reviewing committee of the PRO-7 are submitting to the national headquarters in Camp Crame the dismissed cases especially on illegal drugs.

To help in the resolution of these cases, Taliño said he is welcome to the revival of the Philippine Constabulary to be added forces to the country’s anti-drugs war, as well as giving the police authority to issue a subpoena to their fellow policemen who committed illegal acts.

Lawyer Paul Oaminal, former chairman of the Cebu City Anti Drug Abuse Council, who is part of the reviewing committee, said that internal cleansing should also be conducted within the judiciary in the courts, not only in the police ranks.

In Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) alone, from 2013 to 2016, the committee has 133 cases resolved, 37 cases were acquitted, which means they were ruled as not guilty, while 43 were dismissed.

This means that a total of 80 cases were lost while only 53 were convicted.

“The common ground for dismissal is failure to comply with Section 21 or the chain of custody, physical inventory and photography,” Oaminal said, referring to the procedure on how confiscated drugs should be handled in RA 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

Of the 43 dismissed, 21 were decided by one judge, while of the 37 acquitted, 29 were decided by the same judge.

“I have suggested that the review committee will file cases on the prosecutors and judges who misinterpreted the law, for the gross ignorance of the law,” Oaminal said.

A total of 4,993 drug-related cases are pending in court.

With the figures presented, there is still a lot of work to do, Oaminal said, starting with judges and prosecutors who handle drug cases.

“The Supreme Court should conduct an audit of the dismissed drug cases nationwide. While there is an internal cleansing with the PNP, this is also necessary in the judiciary,” he said.

Recently, President Rodrigo Duterte and PNP Chief Ronald Dela Rosa suspended the anti-drugs campaign, including the serving of drug-related warrants, Oplan Tokhang, Oplan Double Barrel which consisted of drug raids and buy-busts.

The duty is now solely placed on the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) to be supported with the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) also suspended its anti-drugs activities, with Duterte saying that he already lost his trust with the bureau.