PHILIPPINE National Police (PNP) Chief Dionardo Carlos has ordered the immediate dismissal of a police officer who was arrested over criminal charges while allegedly playing online cockfight betting (e-sabong) in Manila.

Carlos said summary dismissal proceedings are underway against Lieutenant John Kevin Menes, 24, who is assigned at PNP Drug Enforcement Group-Special Operations of the Police Regional Office (PRO)- Calabarzon.

Menes, who is facing charges for estafa and illegal gambling, was arrested by the Manila police operatives in an e-sabong hub in Sta. Mesa on March 30.

Carlos said Menes was supposedly restricted in Camp Vicente Lim, Calamba, Laguna over an administrative issue involving unit operational funds during the time of his arrest.

“His activity inside a gambling establishment is in violation of a specific directive issued by the National Headquarters which constitutes grave misconduct under PNP rules,” Carlos said in a press conference.

Since February 17, when the PNP started an internal crackdown against personnel engaged in different forms of gambling activity, seven PNP personnel were already penalized.

Carlos earlier warned policemen not to engage in any gambling activities, especially e-sabong, which resulted in several policemen getting into illegal activities, such as extortion and robbery in order to keep playing or pay their debt.

He instructed all unit commanders to inspect gadgets of their subordinates to determine those who are hooked on e-sabong.

On February 16, Patrolman Glenn Malijan Angoluan was arrested for perpetrating a series of robbery incidents in Laguna and Batangas.

Investigators said the suspect resorted to such kind of illegal activity due to his addiction to online cockfight betting.

The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) is currently investigating eight cases involving the disappearance and alleged abduction of 34 cockfight betting enthusiasts.

Five policemen were linked to the alleged abduction of one of the 34 victims. Charges of kidnapping and serious illegal detention were being prepared against the cops. (SunStar Philippines)