AGENTS of the Philippine National Police Integrity Monitoring and Enforcement Group (PNP-IMEG) on Thursday afternoon arrested a 46-year old female member of the National Capital Region Police Office accused of extortion during an entrapment operation in front of Savemore Hypermart in Araneta Center in Cubao, Quezon City, PNP-IMEG director, Brigadier General Ronald O. Lee announced yesterday.
In a report to PNP chief, General Archie Francisco F. Gamboa, Brig. Gen. Lee identified the accused who has been stripped of her PNP-issued firearm as Staff Sergeant Clarissa dela Cruz, currently assigned at the Regional Personnel Holding Administrative Unit of the NCRPO.
Brig. Gen. Lee said that the policewoman was arrested 3:15 p.m. Thursday by undercover officers from the PNP-IMEG and the 82nd Special Action Company of the PNP Special Action Force following a complaint for robbery-extortion.
NCRPO director, Major Gen. Debold M. Sinas ordered the immediate relief of the accused and the inclusion of her name on the list of Metro Manila police personnel who are detained and considered on automatic leave.
“I have also ordered the conduct of summary hearing procedures on the accused and directed the NCRPO Regional Intelligence Division to coordinate with the PNP-IMEG their investigation into the possibility that the accused was acting in cahoots with some other police officers and men in the conduct of her illegal activities,” said Sinas.
The probe was ordered amid the complaint that the accused sought the arrest and detention of three persons in a QCPD Police-Community Precinct in order to give her a leverage in demanding money from the trio.
The PNP-IMEG director said that their investigation showed that three persons identified as Marissa Alla, Gilbert Ardona and Junaid Patpatan were arrested by members of the Q.C. Police District Station 4 in Barangay Sta. Monica in Novaliches, Q.C. last Wednesday for an alleged estafa case filed by SSgt. Dela Cruz.
However, the policewoman didn’t pursue the criminal case against the three and instead demanded P50,000 from them as purported ‘damages’ she incurred during their failed transaction.
She also brought Alla to her residence in Sampaloc, Manila and waited for the latter’s husband Rico to deliver the P10,000 she was asking for her release. The woman’s husband sought the help of the PNP-IMEG in arresting the suspect.
Brig. Gen. Lee said that their investigation showed that SSgt. Dela Cruz became a face shield supplier during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic and attracted a number of online sellers who wanted to earn some money after being affected by the Enhanced Community Quarantine protocols.
He said that Mrs. Alla turned out to have acted as the ‘middleman’ during their transactions with Ardona and Pandapatan. However, the policewoman got irked when the two buyers reportedly failed to pay their agreed amount during their online transactions and later sought the assistance of personnel from the QCPD Station 4 in arresting and detaining the three.
Lee said that recovered from the policewoman during the entrapment operation were the P10,000 worth of boodle money topped by two marked P500 bills, a cellphone she used in contacting the complainant and a motorcycle.
The suspect was immediately whisked to the PNP-IMEG headquarters in Camp Crame for booking and documentation shortly after her arrest. Lee said they will be filing criminal and administrative charges against the policewoman who claimed innocence over the charges imputed on her.
The PNP-IMEG director said he has ordered a continuing crackdown against rogues in uniform including those who are taking advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to earn fast buck thru illegal ways.
“We are assuring the public that there is no let-up in our campaign against misfits and scalawags in the force as ordered by Gen. Gamboa who has a strict zero-tolerance policy on police officers and men who continue to tarnish the good image of the PNP,” Lee said.
The official also called on the public anew to report the presence of any police personnel involved in irregularities to the PNP IMEG Hotlines: SMART- 09989702286 or GLOBE-09957952569. Information may also be forwarded to Facebook Page: Integrity Monitoring and Enforcement Group and Twitter account: @imeg2017