Drug-dealing cop arrested by PNP-Counter-Intelligence Task Force agents

A SUSPECTED drug-dealing policeman was arrested by agents of the Philippine National Police Counter-Intelligence Task Force during a buy-bust operation in East Rembo, Makati City past 10 a.m. yesterday, a report to PNP chief, Director General Oscar D. Albayalde said.

Senior Staff Sergeant Chris Mateos Marquez, a member of the Regional Police Security and Protection Unit in Region 4-A was placed under arrest after he sold a sachet of shabu to an undercover officer and received the P5,000 in marked bills from a poseur, said PNP-CITF director, Colonel Romeo M. Caramat Jr.

Recovered from the rogue cop’s possession were the heat-sealed plastic sachet he sold to the undercover officer and the marked money. When frisked, he also yielded four more plastic sachets containing around P30,000 worth of the so-called ‘poor man’s cocaine.’

Following the successful buy-bust operation, the PNP-CITF operatives, joined by members of the PNP Intelligence Group headed by Brigadier General Edgar S. Monsalve, the Southern Police District headed by Brig. Gen. Eliseo DC Cruz  and the Makati City Police Station under Colonel Rogelio P. Simon raided the residence of Marquez at no. 132 East Rembo, Makati City on the strength of a search warrant for violation of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 issued by Judge Elmo Alameda of the Makati City Regional Trial Court Branch 150.

Recovered during the search were the suspect’s PNP-issued Glock 17 9mm semi-automatic pistol  with serial numbers PNP 3025,  one UPP 9mm pistol with a magazine, two air gun rifles, 43 rounds of live 9mm ammunition, three sachets with suspected shabu, one digital weighing scale and various drug sniffing paraphernalia including used aluminum foils with traces of suspected shabu and disposable lighters.

Caramat said that yesterday’s operation was triggered by various complaints received by the PNP-CITF and the PNP-IG regarding the rampant involvement of the accused policeman in illicit drug activities in their neighborhood.

The suspect was immediately taken to the PNP-CITF headquarters in Camp Crame for booking and documentation shortly after his arrest. He will be facing administrative charges for grave misconduct and criminal charges for illegal possession of dangerous drugs and firearm and ammunition.

Marquez became the latest rogue in uniform to be arrested by the PNP-CITF in line with its ongoing crackdown against scalawags and misfits in the police service. “This is part of our ongoing massive internal cleansing drive as ordered by Gen. Marquez,” said Caramat.

The other day, PNP spokesman, Col. Bernard M. Banac said that a total of 441 police officers and men have been fired from the force since the start of the Duterte administration for their direct or indirect involvement in illegal drug trafficking and abuse.

“The number is expected to rise as the PNP under General Oscar Albayalde continues an aggressive campaign to ferret out misfits and scalawags in our organization,” the PNP spokesperson said.

Of the 441 dismissed from the service, Banac said that 322 tested positive for substance abuse while 190 others were found guilty of various offenses including selling and possession of dangerous drugs and coddling or protecting drug suspects.

“We are very serious in targeting rogues in uniform. As Gen. Albayalde had said, there will be no compromise when it comes to cops in illegal drugs,” said Banac.

The official said that a total of 8,840 police personnel have also been disciplined for various infractions since 2016, meaning they were either suspended, demoted , reprimanded or admonished for committing both grave and light offenses.