THREE police officers were arrested on Tuesday, July 31, for extorting money from junkshop owners in Valenzuela City, an officer said.
Philippine National Police (PNP) Counter-Intelligence Task Force (CITF) spokesperson Chief Inspector Jewel Nicanor said Senior Police Officer (SPO) 4 Seraffin Adante, Police Officers (PO) 1 Ryan Paul Antimaro and Rey Harvey Florano, along with their civilian cohort identified as Amado Baldon Jr., were arrested in an entrapment operation conducted by the anti-scalawag cops around 9:15 p.m. Tuesday along Mindanao Avenue Extension, Barangay Ugong, Valenzuela City.
The policemen were all members of the Police Community Precinct 8 of the Valenzuela City Police Office.
Nicanor said the operation stemmed from the information forwarded to the CITF by the PNP intelligence group that the suspects were collecting P200 to P500 each night from all the junkshops in Valenzuela City.
“All arrested suspects are now under the custody of CITF for documentation and proper disposition,” he said.
Before dawn of Tuesday, three police officers were arrested while another was killed in an operation launched by the Special Weapons and Tactics (Swat) team supposedly against a kidnap-for-ransom group.
The suspects were later identified as active police officers and members of the Taguig City Police Office.
PNP Chief Oscar Albayalde expressed dismay over the involvement mostly of the rookie cops in illegal activities despite the support of the government especially the increase of their salaries.
In the PNP salary structure, a police officer is receiving a minimum monthly base pay of P29,668 on top of other allowances.
“Alam n’yo ‘yun po din ang tinatanong natin dahil ‘yung mga nahuhuli natin tinatanong natin kung ano pa ba ang kulang? Ano pa ang kakulangan, ano pa ang gusto nila na ibigay ng ating gobyerno despite the fact na dinoble na nga ‘yung sweldo natin pati mga equipments natin dinoble na nga ng ating pamahalaan still meron pa ring mga ganyang gawain sila,” said Albayalde.
“Ang sagot naman satin parang tungkol lang din sa pera. Tingin ko ang puno’t-dulo din nito ay ang pag amass, para magkaroon ng sobra-sobrang pera probably meron silang mga lifestyle pati na ang kanilang mga pamilya,” he added.
Albayalde said they are continuously coordinating with churches and religious groups nationwide for the spiritual development and values formation of the policemen.
He said the PNP has also intensified the background investigation of those applying to be police officers, citing an instance when an applicant was able to enter the service but was later on found to have two standing warrants and a criminal case.
“Ang gagawin natin ngayon sa pagba-background investigation (BI) ay kailangan kung sino ang pulis na nag-BI, nandun ang kanyang pangalan at kanyang pirmado ang BI na ginawa niya, pati COP 9chief of police) na concern so that just in case magkaroon ng problema o hindi tama ‘yung pag-BI sa aplikante na ‘yun, pwede nating balikan ‘yung pulis na nag BI,” he said.
Albayalde said in order to also avoid corruption or “bata-bata” system during the recruitment, they are already using barcodes for the applicant’s identification, rather than their names.
He said they are also fast-tracking the resolution of the administrative cases especially of those cops arrested red handed and solid evidences were provided against them.
“Pinabilis na rin natin yan lalo na ‘yung outright na merong ebidensya laban sa kanila dahil kung susundin po namin ‘yung aming proseso ay aabot ng four months... Kami po ay nagtalaga na, nag-appoint na ng mga summary hearing officers na magha-handle po ng mga kaso lalo nung may mga ebidensya na para instead of four months, magagawa natin within two months ma-dismiss ‘yung mga pulis na tiwali,” said Albayalde.
But Albayalde ensured that due process is being strictly followed in order to make sure that the erring cop will no longer get back to active duty. (SunStar Philippines)