A HIGH-ranking official of the Presidential Anti-Smuggling Group (PASG) was charged by a lawyer before the police with physical injury.

Lawyer Bonifacio Alentajan went to the Pasig City Station Investigation and Detective Management Branch to make official his complaint against Jeffrey Patawaran, chief of staff of the anti-smuggling task group.

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In his complaint, Alentajan said the mauling incident happened around 11 a.m. Thursday inside the office of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Building located along Julia Vargas Street, Ortigas Center, Pasig City.

He said Patawaran mauled him right after the hearing of the disbarment case filed against him by PASG at the IBP.

Alentajan added that he and Patawaran saw each other in the office and without provocation the PASG official punched and kicked him.

He reiterated that the anger of Patawaran was borne out of the dismissal of the smuggling case filed by PASG against his client Siu Ting Alpha Kwok, aka "Diamond Queen" only recently.

Kwok was accused by PASG of illegally exporting and importing diamonds to the Philippines but the case was dismissed by the Department of Justice due to technicality.

This, after PASG failed to submit an inventory of the diamonds they confiscated from the accused.

Patawaran, for his part, admitted that he had the heat on Alentajan when he was told by the lawyer that PASG meant “Presidential Abu Sayyaf Group.”

The PASG official said he is ready to face any case to be filed against him before the police or in court as the case maybe.

It could be recalled that Cabinet Secretary Silvestro Bello III urged PASG to elevate the case against Kwok before the Office of the President. (AH/Sunnex)