SOME 1,025 firearms belonging to 96 private security agencies ordered closed by the Philippine National Police Supervisory Office for Security and Investigation Agencies for various violations in 2018 have been seized by the police, PNP chief Director General Oscar D. Albayalde announced yesterday.
“We expect to account for more firearms from 356 other private security agencies that are the subject of similar Cease to Operate orders,” said Albayalde.
PNP Civil Security Group director Chief Superintendent Reynaldo G. Biay and PNP-SOSIA director Chief Supt. Noli A. Romana presented the seized weapons at Camp Crame.
Biay said the security guards’ weapons were confiscated as part of their intensified campaign to recover and account for all firearms registered to the 96 PSAs ordered shut down by the PNP-SOSIA last year for violating different government rules and regulations including non-payment of taxes, submission of fraudulent papers and other violation of CSG guidelines and other policies.
He said in line with President Duterte’s order, they also issued guidelines to private security provides when it comes to possession and use of high-powered firearms.
According to Romana, they came up with the operational plan to fully implement the “cease to operate” orders nationwide.
As of last December, he said that the National Capital Region has a total of 452 private security providers with “cease to operate’ orders.”
Out of this number, Romana said that they went after 96 private security agencies in the metropolis and confiscated a total of 953 assorted firearms from the agencies ordered shut down from January to December last year.
Romana said they are targeting another 356 security agencies this year.
The official added that from January to June last year, a total of 526 firearms were either confiscated by his men or surrendered by agencies possessing them.
The last six months of 2018 saw the PNP-SOSIA accounting for another 499 firearms.
The official said that the confiscated weapons have been turned over to the PNP Firearms and Explosives Office for safekeeping.
“This significant accomplishment of the CSG-SOSIA will bring a strong message to the private security providers with ‘cease to operate’ orders to properly coordinate with the CSG-SOSIA for the voluntary surrender of their juridical firearms because they have no legal personality to hold/possess them,” Biay said.
“By doing it, they will avoid any administrative and criminal liability in the future against the licensee and/or officers of the security agency,” he added.