A LAWYER assigned at the Registry of Deeds (ROD) in Mandaue City, Cebu was arrested inside his office in an entrapment operation after he allegedly accepted bribe money from his client.

The lawyer, Reynaldo Paredes Mayol, reportedly denied the accusation against him although he tested positive in the fingerprint test.

“Marked money was used and [he was] positive [of the] presence of fluorescent powder in his hands,” said lawyer Rennan Augustus Oliva, director of the National Bureau of Investigation in Central Visayas (NBI 7).

Oliva said the NBI 7 conducted the operation on Friday, Nov. 25, 2022 based on a complaint from Manuel Dy Jr., who claimed that he had given P100,000 to the accused for the first annotation of his certificate of title.

In their second meeting, the victim alleged that the lawyer demanded another P150,000 from him for the release of annotation and a new title.

“He felt insulted and betrayed by the actions of the Register of Deeds because he (suspect) won’t act in his capacity as the register of deeds without monetary considerations... He also stated that he has a certificate of finality of a favorable judgment on compromise from the Regional Trial Court Branch 18. In his judicial affidavit, he continued to demand P100,000 for the annotation of a prior certificate of title,” Oliva told SunStar Cebu on Monday, Nov. 28.

Oliva said the accused has been working with ROD Mandaue for the past 11 years, receiving a salary of Grade 23 (over P78,000).

The suspect will face charges for violating Section 3(b) of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and Article 210 of the Revised Penal Code or Direct Bribery. Both offenses are bailable.

Oliva urged the public to report to authorities if they encounter a situation like this.

“Any persons similarly situated regarding this kind of dealings, you can come to our office to request for investigation. We are encouraging other complainants from other places which have similar complaints. We will investigate and if found to be true we will file the necessary complaints,” said Oliva.

Oliva said that aside from the suspect, they also previously arrested an employee of ROD in Cebu City for a similar offense. (ANV / TPT)