PRESIDENT Duterte, or any other president in office, has access to information from national intelligence agencies, on top of intelligence sections of the police and the armed forces.

Yet before the theory surfaced that Korean mafia killed the Korean businessman inside Camp Crame-- to compete with the NBI finding that cops were responsible for the kidnap-murder-- there was no mention by Cebu police or NBI or any of our local leaders. Now Duterte is saying Cebu is thick with Korean criminals.

‘Ask anyone’

Duterte was quoted as telling the Palace press corps to “ask anyone in Cebu” or “go to Cebu for investigative journalism” and reporters will find out “Cebu is the hardest hit” by the Koreans’ criminal activities.

Here’s the thing: most Cebuanos hadn’t heard and their leaders hadn’t talked about it. Not before Duterte’s disclosure last weekend. We did hear and talk about some Koreans engaged in drunken brawl or being cheapskate and quarrelsome. Mostly about alcohol-induced petty misbehavior, not syndicated crime.

Missed story

Even police “orders of battle” and lists of drug lords and traffickers, including those used by Duterte in public shaming, didn’t carry Korean names.And this must be recently acquired info since Koreans were not among the villains in the local drug scene during the first six months of the campaign.

And it would strain credulity if it would require out-of-town reporters to dig out a story that is supposedly of common knowledge (“ask anyone”).

If it’s true

OK, assume that it’s true. Are there already law enforcers assigned to stop the Korean mafia and contain its bad influence? Are local officials adequately informed and in control?

Do tell how much of a threat the foreign criminals are to Cebu’s public safety. Or should we expect nothing more than the sight of Korean corpses along with the bodies of gunned-down Filipinos on the streets?