PNP chief orders internal probe on Sinas’ alleged birthday party

Robie de Guzman   •   May 13, 2020   •   873

MANILA, Philippines – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police General Archie Gamboa on Wednesday said he has ordered the Internal Affairs Service (IAS) to conduct an investigation into the alleged birthday party of National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) director Major General Debold Sinas.

In a statement, Gamboa said the probe will cover the circumstances surrounding the  alleged violation of quarantine protocols during the surprise birthday celebration held for Sinas.

He said the chief of the IAS has been instructed to send a team to the NCRPO to initiate a formal inquiry into the incident.

“The PNP is not exempt from strict rules on mass gathering, and I am directing all unit commanders to prohibit any and all social gatherings,” Gamboa said.

In a message sent to UNTV, Sinas denied he held a party for his birthday.

“Wala po ako birthday party at wala dito mass gathering,” his message read.

He also clarified that the photos earlier posted on social media showing him receiving roses, cake and sharing a meal with his colleagues was a surprise mañanita organized by his personnel.

He stressed that the event followed health protocols after it drew flak as social distancing was allegedly not observed during the mañanita.

“Iyong dumalaw na nagmañanita sa akin ay kaunti lang na nag social distancing pa sila, and packed meals po ibinigay ko sa kanila,” he said.

The NCRPO chief added that he opted to distribute food packs and lechon he received as gifts to regional mobile force battalion (RMFB) stationed in every district so they won’t have to visit him at his police quarters.

“Marami ako ibinigay na packed meals sa mga kasama namin dito sa Camp Bicutan para hindi na pumunta sa quarters ko. Iyong mga lechon na pagkain na ibinigay sa akin ay binigay ko rin sa bawat districts ng RMFBs para hindi na sila magpunta and stand by sa Camp Bicutan,” he said.

Gamboa earlier defended Sinas, saying he does not see any violation that the NCRPO chief committed.

He also shared that Sinas had assured him that physical distancing was observed but he will look into any violation related to the event.

I will look into it. I still trust pa rin naman Gen. Sinas. Alam naman natin napakahirap no’ng trabaho niya sa NCRPO but nevertheless it is not an excuse for him not to follow simple health protocols,” he said.

Interior and Local Government Secretary, meanwhile, said that as a police official, Sinas should serve as an example in following health protocols amid the COVID-19 crisis.

“Ito yung tinatawag nating delicadeza. May pagkakataon na kailangan maging example ka,” he said.RRD (with details from Correspondent Lea Ylagan)

DOJ wants review of cops’ administrative, criminal liabilities in anti-illegal drug ops

Marje Pelayo   •   February 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Justice (DOJ) Inter-Agency Review Panel has submitted to the President and furnished a copy to the Philippine National Police (PNP) its preliminary findings in the conduct of anti-illegal drug operations of law enforcement personnel. 

The review covered the 328 cases of the thousands of illegal drug operations conducted since President Duterte assumed office in 2016.

According to DOJ Undersecretary Adrian Sugay, their recommendations include a review of possible administrative and criminal liabilities of erring cops that result in the death of suspects.

The PNP is expected to release its report on the matter in the first week of March.

The DOJ assures that all policemen who are involved in such cases will be held accountable based on the result of their review.

This came after an incident that happened in Quezon City where members of the PNP and agents from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) engaged in a shootout in an alleged anti-illegal drug operation.

“Any and all possible administrative/criminal liability against those involved in these anti-illegal drug operations where deaths occurred may be pursued depending on any further findings/recommendations,” Usec. Adrian Sugay stressed. (MNP with reports from Dante Amento)

Duterte designates NBI as sole body to probe PNP-PDEA ‘misencounter’

Robie de Guzman   •   February 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has designated the National Bureau of Investigation to be the sole agency to investigate the alleged misencounter between cops and operatives of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), Malacañang said Friday.

“Nagdesisyon po ang ating president na tanging NBI lang po ang mag-iimbestiga duon sa putukan na nangyari sa panig ng mga kapulisan at PDEA diyan po sa Quezon City,” Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said.

The shooting incident involving policemen and PDEA operatives occurred on Wednesday afternoon near a mall along Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City. Four individuals – two cops, a PDEA agent and an informant – were killed in the gun battle.

The PNP and PDEA earlier said that a joint Board of Inquiry has been created to look into the incident.

But due to Duterte’s order, the joint probe will have to be discontinued.

“’Yung mga binuong joint panel para imbestigahan yan, na binuo po ng PNP at PDEA ay di na po magtutuloy sa kanilang imbestigahan,” Roque said.

Both PNP and PDEA assured to work with the NBI in compliance with Duterte’s directive. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

P7.9-M worth of marijuana seized in Cordillera police ops

Robie de Guzman   •   February 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines Thousands of dried marijuana plants and seeds were confiscated in a series of raids conducted by police operatives in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), the Philippine National Police (PNP) said Friday.

In a statement, PNP chief General Debold Sinas said the Cordillera police launched the operations on five clandestine marijuana farms in Kalinga from Thursday until Friday, as part of PNP’s “summer offensive” against cultivation of prohibited plants.

The police raid on the five plantation sites, with a total land area of 2,550 square meters, stemmed from a buy-bust operation conducted by joint elements of Special Operations Unit 2, led by PNP Drug Enforcement Group with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA)-Isabela, the Isabela PIU, the SAF Kalinga and the 2nd Coy KPMFC on February 18, 2021, that resulted in the arrest of two persons.

The PNP said the operation yielded the arrest of two persons who told authorities about the illegal cultivation of marijuana in the mountainous area of Barangay Loccong, Tinglayan, Kalinga.

This information led to the clearing operations and destruction of marijuana plants in coordination with the PDEA, the PNP said.

Police said a total of 21,600 fully-grown marijuana plants were destroyed in the clandestine farms, including some 30 kilograms of dried marijuana stalks and one kilogram of marijuana seeds, all estimated to be worth P7,945,000 based on standard drug price used by the Dangerous Drugs Board.

“Let me reiterate that police operation against the cultivation, production, and trafficking of Marijuana will continue without let-up because under Philippine laws, Cannabis in the form of plants, products, and its derivatives is still a dangerous drug as defined under Republic Act No. 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002,” Sinas said.

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