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DOJ may review dismissal of drug charges vs Espinosa, et al. — Aguirre

by UNTV   |   Posted on Wednesday, March 14th, 2018

File Photo: Kerwin Espinosa

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Justice (DOJ) can still revise its decision on the case against self-confessed drug lord Kerwin Espinosa, Peter Lim and their other co-accused in connection with illegal drug trading.

In a statement, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II said the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) can file another motion.

He added that his office can also automatically review the case.

He admitted that the DOJ resolution can be considered as a setback on the war on drugs of the government, but noted that it could serve as a wakeup call to authorities to improve their manner of arrest and detention of suspects by presenting strong evidence against them.

It was on December 20, 2017, when the DOJ prosecution panel issued a decision on the complaint filed by the CIDG that favors the accused due to insufficient evidence.

According to the CIDG, it filed a motion before the DOJ on February 19, and they expected that Espinosa would not escape the law.

 “We believe our case has merit. We filed a  motion for reconsideration and now it is being looked into and we are still very positive that we will [win] over. We can file the case,” said CIDG Director PDir. Roel Obusan.

“We will use all our legal remedies to make them hold liable. So there’s already a motion in the prosecution,” said Philippine National Police chief  PDG. Ronald Bato dela Rosa.

Meanwhile, the lawyer of Espinosa is confident that the other case filed against him will also be dismissed. It is an illegal drug case filed by Ozamiz City PCInsp. Jovie Espenido.

“We can actually sight the resolution of the panel of prosecutors on the case of CIDG as our evidence that we are presenting in the pending case before the RTC,” said Atty. Raymund Fortun, legal counsel of Espinosa.

Meanwhile, Espenido believes he has a strong case especially since Espinosa admitted his involvement in illegal drug trading during a Senate hearing. — Mai Bermudez | UNTV News and Rescue

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Aguirre discards panel’s dismissal of drug charges vs Espinosa,  et al.

by UNTV   |   Posted on Tuesday, March 20th, 2018

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre

FILE PHOTO: Department of Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre

MANILA, Philippines — Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II has scrapped the dismissal of drug charges against self-confessed drug dealer Kerwin Espinosa and other alleged drug lords such as Peter Lim, Peter Co, and others.

For now, the justice department is giving the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the accused, enough time to submit new sets of evidence.

Among those that can be submitted to the DOJ are the transcript of Espinosa’s travel records and his admission before the Senate hearing that he is a drug dealer.

“The motion for reconsideration pending before I assumed the power of automatic review is now deemed moot and academic,” Aguirre said.

The official added that he will have a lawyer that will focus on the gathering of evidence and the investigation of the PNP on the cases.

PNP said they are preparing the evidence that will pin down Espinosa on his involvement in illegal drug operations.

PNP Drug Enforcement Group (DEG) Director PCSupt. Albert Ferro said that the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) has already obtained a copy of the extrajudicial confession or the evidence of Espinosa’s admission in November 2016 that he is involved in the illegal drug operations.

“The Senate transcript is actually same with the extrajudicial confession of Kerwin because when it was presented, Kerwin had no prepared speech so his judicial affidavit was presented,” said PNP-DEG Legal and Investigation Division chief PSupt. Enrico Rigor.

Meanwhile, Aguirre admitted that some prosecutors were unhappy about his order to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to conduct a probe on those who are involved in the case dismissal.

Despite this, the official said that he will not stop the investigations.

“Naiintindihan ko iyong (I understand) where they are coming from. But they should also understand that because of the backlash caused by some people with ill-motives coupled with politics, nagkaroon po ng hindi magandang perception ang public dito sa isyung ito (the public had a negative perception on this issue),” Aguirre said. — Rosalie Coz | UNTV News & Rescue

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PNP chief vows no escape for drug suspects

by UNTV   |   Posted on Tuesday, March 20th, 2018

FILE PHOTO: PNP Chief Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa

MANILA, Philippines — Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police Director General Ronald dela Rosa has once again expressed his dismay over the dismissal of drug charges against several drug suspects.

Dela Rosa considers the dismissal of the charges against self-confessed drug lord Kerwin Espinosa and alleged drug suspect Peter Lim and others as a lesson to the whole PNP unit.

The PNP chief also vowed not to allow any more drug suspects to escape the law.

“Sino bang masaya? Malungkot tayo. Malungkot nga yung ordinaryong tao na nanonood lang sa TV na inaamin ni Kerwin Espinosa na siya’y druglord. Si Peter Lim ay druglord. Kami pa kaya na nagtatrabaho diyan,” said the PNP chief.

(Who would be happy about it? We feel sad. Even ordinary people who have witnessed the confession of Kerwin Espinosa that he’s a drug lord; that Peter Lim is a drug lord, are sad about it, even more so for us who worked on the case.)

Dela Rosa explained that he is frustrated with the decision of the panel of prosecutors of the Department of Justice (DOJ) that handled the case.

Dela Rosa also said he felt sorry for the policemen who sacrificed their lives for the campaign against illegal drugs.

The police chief also gave a warning to Kerwin Espinosa.

“Naisahan talaga kami pero kwidaw (We really were fooled, but beware). Ikaw, Kerwin, naisahan mo kami ngayon (You, Kerwin, was able to pull a fast one this time) but you cannot “one” us all the time. Mark my word, Mr. Kerwin Espinosa. You cannot “one” us all the time,” said Dela Rosa.)

Several prosecutors of the DOJ dismissed the case against the drug suspects for insufficient evidence. — Victor Cosare | UNTV News & Rescue

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Akbayan calls for Sec. Aguirre to quit

by UNTV   |   Posted on Tuesday, March 20th, 2018

FILE PHOTO: Department of Justice Sec. Vitaliano Aguirre

MANILA, Philippines — Several members of the Department of Justice held a protest in front of the Department of Justice (DOJ) on Monday morning.

The group called for the resignation of Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre over what they claim as his errors in decision-making.

Akbayan said these include his dismissal of the charges against alleged big-time drug lords Peter Lim, self-confessed drug lord Kerwin Espinosa and other individuals charged by the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG).

The protesters also opposed the decision of the DOJ to place pork barrel scam queen Janet Lim Napoles under its witness protection program despite being the primary accused in the cases involving the alleged misuse of lawmakers’ Priority Development Assistance Funds (PDAF). — UNTV News & Rescue

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