A DISBURSING officer of Barili municipal government and her daughter were arrested by the police after being accused of stealing the money that was intended for the salaries of municipal employees.

Lucia Concepcion, 60, a designated disbursing officer and her daughter, Jane Nicole Concepcion, 29, an Admin Aid 1 of the Ronda Rural Health Unit were detained at the Barili Police Station.

According to Police Staff Sergeant Carlos Dicdican, investigator of the Barili Police station, the suspect got P31,000 inside the vault of the disbursing office.

"We filed the case and then we detained them. They both denied (the charges)," said Dicdican on Wednesday, June 7, 2023.

The police received a report from a job order employee assigned to the Disbursing Office in relation to the incident on June 6, 2023.

They immediately acted on the report and checked the CCTV footage of the municipality and found that a woman entered the building at 8:59 p.m..on June 5, and came out at 9:07 p.m. of the same day.

Upon further investigation, it was discovered that the woman was known as Jane.

As a result, the police conducted a hot pursuit operation on June 6, where the suspect was caught in Ronda town where she also works.

The police recovered from the suspect P19,550 in cash and four white empty envelopes with the names of employees of Barili local government unit (LGU) in it.

Her mother was also arrested after it was found that she allegedly gave the suspect the master duplicate key to the vault where the money was kept.

"Posible gyud (nga nakahibaw) kay nganong naa man siyay yawe, unya kanang bayhana dili man na trabahante diri sa LGU, (It's possible [that she was aware] because why she had the key, then that woman is not a worker here in the LGU)" Dicdican said.

But Lucia denied the accusation against them.

She did, however, acknowledge in a radio interview with DyHP AM that he had given her daughter the key so she could return the borrowed printer that she had used to complete the paperwork required for the employees' salaries.

She made it clear that on the night of the incident, she had not given her daughter the command to do the act.

According to Lucia, it wasn't her daughter who was captured on the CCTV.

"Dili ni mao. Nganong makaingon ko nga dili ni mao kay didto mi sa among balay nangaon mi og sweetcorn. Dili pod mi tig-anha og gabii’ng daku, unsa ma'y anhaon. Ako kahibaw ko modepensa. Ika-duha kung moanha man gani siya kadtong pagka Lunes sa buntag nga nag-uli sa printer namo kay naa man koy gipang print nga report nako," Lucia said on Thursday, June 8.

(That’s not [my daughter.] I'm able to say that because we were eating sweet corn at home. What will we do there if we go there at night? I am capable of defending myself. Second, if she went there, it was on Monday morning after I had printed my reports and she had returned the printer.)

Lucia has been employed by the Barili LGU since 1996 until she became revenue collection clerk of the Treasurer’s Office under the late mayor Marlon Garcia’s administration. (ANV, TPT)