2 Mabalacat police execs sacked for 'tanim droga'

CAMP OLIVAS, Pampanga -- Two high-ranking police officials in Mabalacat City were relieved from their post following reports of increasing number of “tanim-droga,” a scheme of planting evidences on drug cases in the city.

Superintendent Juritz Rara, Mabalacat police chief and Senior Inspector Melvin Florida Jr., Drug Enforcement Unit (DEU) chief were relieved over the weekend. They were transferred to the provincial administrative holding center pending the result of the investigation.

The Volunteer Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) earlier called for the relief of the two police officials after a man, who was not identified, claimed that he was arrested from his residence by a team of policemen headed by Florida without on April 24 without any offense.

The suspect’s drug pushing charges was later dismissed by the Office of the City Prosecutor for technicalities, it was learned.

Both Rara and Florida denied the suspect’s allegations.

"Wala po kaming ginawang illegal (We didn’t do any illegal act)," Rara said.

Florida, for his part, said the suspect tested positive of illegal drugs and that he even tried to bribe the arresting policemen.

Chief Superintendent Aaron Aquino, Central Luzon police director, said Superintendent Ruel Cagape replaced Rara.

Aquino said at least 12 other policemen were relieved for the similar allegations.

He named the police officials as Chief Inspector Sonia Alvarez, Bacolor police chief, Chief Inspector Philip Pineda, Drug Enforcement Unit head, Police Officer 2 Rethmel Santos and Mark dela Torre and eight agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency.
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