'Fake' city hall employee nabbed for ghost housing project

ANGELES CITY -- Mayor Carmelo "Pogi" Lazatin Jr., of this city has issued a stern warning: "Don't use the name of the city government for your own benefit."

A woman was nabbed in an entrapment operation on January 29, 2024 for an alleged ghost housing project located at Phase 9, Barangay Pulung Cacutud.

This stemmed from a complaint filed by Daniel Pascua of Porac town for alleged usurpation of authority, falsification of public documents, robbery extortion/estafa against Jessel Vitente of Cutud this city.

Vitente allegedly claimed that she was an employee of the city government. The suspect is currently facing charges.

Pascua sought the help of the city government and the Angeles City Police Office Station 3 in connection with his complaint against Vitente.

The suspect allegedly offered Pascua a housing project and the latter paid a processing fee of P2,300 and a monthly amortization of P1,499.

Upon noticing that the documents issued by Vitente were allegedly fake, the complainant went to the City Hall to verify if the suspect is affiliated with the Angeles City Human Settlements and Urban Development (formerly known as Local Urban Poor Affairs and Housing Office or LUPAHO).

Pascua also checked the legitimacy of the alleged project and documents he received from Vitente.

The ACHSUD later confirmed that there was no such project.

The ACHSUD reported the incident to Mayor Lazatin, who learned from the Human Resources and Management Office that Vitente was only affiliated with the city government from July 1, 2019 to October 5, 2023 under the Civil Security Unit.

Records of the Angeles City Anti Drug Abuse Council also showed that Vitente did not comply with the city government's mandatory drug testing which caused her termination from office

"Not in any way is she still connected with the city government," Lazatin stressed.

"We do not tolerate such act. Hindi po natin hahayaan ang ganitong paggamit sa pangalan ng siyudad sa mga walang katotohanan na gawain," the mayor added.

Lazatin ordered the ACPO to investigate the report and help the alleged victim.

An entrapment operation was conducted to arrest the suspect.

The pieces of evidence were turned over to the ACPO Station 3.

According to the report, there are five other victims of the alleged fake project.

"Kinokondena ko po ang ganitong klase ng gawain, wala po itong lugar sa ating administrasyon," Lazatin said.

The mayor reminded Angeleños that all official projects and announcements from the city government will be posted and updated via the Facebook page of Angeles City Information Office.

He also urged Angeleños to immediately report suspicious activities which involve the city government.

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