DOJ begins reinvestigation on 2013 drug raid

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 16, 2019   •   159

DOJ Secretary Menardo Guevarra

The Department of Justice has begun reinvestigation of the 2013 Pampanga drug raid involving 13 cops allegedly involved in illegal drug recycling.

The 13 cops were ordered to attend the investigation and submit additional evidence.

DOJ Secretary Menardo Guevarra previously formed a three-member panel to reinvestigate the case where around 160 kilos of suspected illegal drugs were seized during an operation in Pampanga.

The Philippine National Police Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG), meanwhile, requested the DOJ panel for more time to submit records about alleged drug lord Johnson Lee and Ding Wengkun.

The DOJ panel will give the PNP-CIDG five days to submit additional evidence and supplemental affidavit.

Meanwhile, PMaj. Rodney Baloyo was given a subpoena by the DOJ for not attending the preliminary investigation.

Baloyo is currently at New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa after the Senate cited him in contempt for allegedly lying during a hearing.

“We still issued subpoena to the said respondent and even wrote a letter to the Senate president asking permission for him to be allowed in this proceedings,” according to state prosecutor Senior Assistant Atty. Alexander Suarez. —AAC (with reports from April Cenedoza)

Faeldon’s attempt to realign P1-B fund for prison facilities rehab revealed in Senate budget hearing

Maris Federez   •   November 20, 2019

Former Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) Director General Nicanor Faeldon

Former Bureau of Corrections chief Nicanor Faeldon allegedly attempted to realign the supposed portion of the agency’s budget which was allocated for the rehabilitation of the prison facilities in Davao, Palawan, and Zamboanga which costs P1-Billion.

This was revealed on Wednesday (November 20) during the Senate hearing on the proposed budget of the Department of Justice.

Senator Sonny Angara said Faeldon purportedly wanted to divert the budget for the Sablayan Detention Facilities in Mindoro.

“He even wrote me asking for the realignment but we told him its not proper for the committee to do that,” Angara said.

Senator Franklin Drilon said although there was nothing wrong with Faeldon’s letter to the Budget Department on his proposed realignment, his intention at that time was dubious.

“But at that time of before the last election, we heard that he was interested in running for an election post in Mindoro. Certainly, to request the realign P1 billion (part of P1 billion) to Sablayan detention facilities in Mindoro is become suspect,” Drilon added. (from the report of Nel Maribojoc) /mbmf

Raps vs. Albayalde, 13 ninja cops submitted for resolution

Marje Pelayo   •   November 18, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Justice (DOJ) has closed the trial on the charges filed against former Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Oscar Albayalde and 13 policemen tagged as ninja cops.

The case is now submitted for resolution and the DOJ panel will release the resolution once it finds probable cause to pursue with the charges.

Albayalde and 13 other cops are facing corruption charges and violations of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 due to an anomalous drug raid in Mexico, Pampanga in 2013 where the cops allegedly ‘recycled’ the confiscated illegal drugs.

Albayalde denied the allegations and claimed that the case should be dismissed.

He was the Provincial Director of Pampanga Police when the controversial anti-drug operations happened.

No basis to file administrative raps vs Albayalde over ‘ninja cops’ issue – DILG

Robie de Guzman   •   November 6, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Wednesday said it has found no substantial evidence to file an administrative complaint against former Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police General Oscar Albayalde.

This is in relation to the alleged anomalies in a 2013 drug raid conducted by 13 Pampanga police officers, tagged as “ninja cops” for allegedly pilfering and recycling part of the illegal drugs they confiscated during the operation.

Albayalde was the provincial police head when the controversial operation occurred.

“Albayalde is liable for command responsibility; that is why he was relieved as Pampanga Provincial Director in 2014,” DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said in a statement.

“However, since he already relinquished his post as chief of PNP, he can no longer be relieved of his position at this time,” he added.

Albayalde relinquished his post and went on a non-duty status on Oct. 14 following allegations of his involvement in the anomalous raid.

He is set to retire from police service on Friday, Nov. 8.

The PNP Criminal Investigation and Detection Group included Albayalde as among the respondents in its amended referral complaint about the “ninja cops” issue.

Año said the cases against Albayalde will be up to the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Office of the Ombudsman.

As to the 13 “ninja cops,” the DILG chief said new administrative charges will be filed in light of the new evidence gathered against them.

“The filing of new administrative charges against these Ninja cops is in light of new evidence gathered by the Joint DILG-Napolcom Review Committee as well as those that came out during the Senate Investigation,” Año said.

“The President has given his guidance to the DILG to pursue the administrative cases against the 13 Ninja cops which we have already started,” he added.

The DILG said the charges being pursued against these cops include serious irregularity in the performance of duty, dishonesty and grave misconduct.

These cops are also facing criminal charges before the DOJ.

“The charges to be filed against them will not be for the same offenses for which they were charged in the past. Moreover, the complaining witness this time will be the Napolcom which is vested with competent jurisdiction on the matter, hence, res judicata will not apply,” DILG Undersecretary and Spokesperson Jonathan Malaya said in a statement.

Malaya said that the Joint Review Committee subpoenaed 21 persons composed of personalities who testified at the Senate.

The committee also reviewed documentary evidence consisting of the transcript of stenographic notes from the Senate hearings, as well as pertinent documents related to the 2013 Lakeshore incident.

Año also said that the National Police Commission has convened a Summary Hearing board to hear the charges against the alleged ninja cops.

He added that the summary dismissal proceedings against the respondents can be completed within 45 calendar days “without violating their right to due process.”

“Pending the resolution of their cases, the respondents will be placed under restrictive custody at Camp Crame,” he said.

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