FROM 2017 to date, a total of 93 rogues in uniform have been arrested and jailed while 9 others were killed in shootouts by agents of the Philippine National Police Counter-Intelligence Task Force as it continues to wage an unrelenting war on crooks tarnishing the good image of the 190,000-strong force, the Journal Group learned yesterday.
The gains being made by the national police force in its internal cleansing program is one of the reasons why the PNP leadership headed by Director General Oscar D. Albayalde has protested the way ABS-CBN’s “Ang Probinsiyano” have been portraying the police force as “evils and violators of the law.”
PNP spokesman Chief Superintendent Benigno B. Durana Jr. said the truth is that they have been unrelenting when it comes to “punishing the bad and rewarding the good” in their organization as proven by the PNP-CITF’s all-out operations against misfits and scalawags in the force and the regular giving of medals and other awards to policemen who have done good for the country.
Gen. Albayalde himself took note of the “swift and decisive” counter-intelligence operations by PNP units mainly through the PNP Counter-Intelligence Task Force that resulted in the arrest of 91 errant PNP members for various offenses.
The PNP-CITF is headed by Philippine Military Academy Class 1992 member Senior Superintendent Romeo M. Caramat Jr., a former Bulacan Police Provincial Office director who was given by the PNP leadership the tough mission of leading the crackdown on rogues in uniform regardless of their rank and position.
The highest-ranked among those killed in a PNP-CITF operation was Supt. Santiago Rapiz, a logistics officer of the Zamboanga del Norte Police Office who used to be assigned in Western Visayas until he was tagged as a drug lord protector.
The official said that Rapiz was shot dead during a buy-bust operation in Dipolog City last November 5. Seized from the slain officer’s possession were P50,000 in marked money, 25 grams of suspected shabu and a loaded caliber .45 pistol.
The PNP chief said that on top of this, a total of 7,431 PNP personnel have been meted out disciplinary penalties for administrative offenses since 2016. They include 2,169 policemen who were dismissed from the service for grave misconduct and other infractions; 4,133 who were suspended; 436 who got demoted; 464 who were reprimanded; and 30 who were ordered restricted to quarters while undergoing investigation.
Forty-eight others had their privileges withheld while 151 had their salaries forfeited for various administrative offenses during the period, he added.
“As we have promised, this internal cleansing program will continue without let-up until we completely achieve our desire for a highly professional and disciplined police force that truly deserves the trust and support of the people,” Gen. Albayalde said.
According to Caramat, the death of the 9 rogues in uniform and the arrest of 93 others were the result of 52 separate counter-intelligence operations they conducted over the past 19 months.
Caramat said that during the period, they received nearly 14,000 SMS and calls through their hotline numbers. Target of the 1,718 complaints were 450 Police Commissioned Officers and 1,454 Police Non-Commissioned Officers from February 3, 2017 to last September 27.
The PNP-CITF said that they are conducting a drive against misfits and scalawags in uniform on orders of Gen. Albayalde who wanted the PNP Internal Cleansing Program to be relentless to those personnel who put the organization to shame.
“We will also be resolute in our strong desire to achieve an organizational culture where professionalism and integrity pervade and endure at all times. And our internal cleansing program will not spare anyone,” the PNP chief said.
PNP spokesman, Chief Supt. Benigno B. Durana Jr. said that 368 of the erring policemen were dismissed for drug-related offenses.
Last Sunday, PNP-CITF agents arrested six men led by a former Muntinlupa City policeman ordered transferred to Basilan for his reported involvement in illegal drugs in 2016 during an anti-illegal cockfighting raid.
Caramat said that the arrest of Police Officer 2 Yob Lopez Enguio came amid a number of complaints sent to the PNP-CITF hotline regarding a policeman managing illegal “tupada” (cockfighting) in their community in Muntinlupa City.
Around 10 a.m. Sunday, PNP-CITF officers raided the ‘tupada’ site in Purok 6 in Barangay Bayangan, Muntinlupa City and arrested PO2 Enguio and 5 other civilians identified as Jessie Bautista, Joey Paler, Rene Anonuevo, Benedicto Quitan and Gerry Taeza while in the act of conducting illegal cockfighting.
Confiscated during the operation were 4 fighting cocks, 2 gaffs or “tari” and P8,600 in cash bets.
Caramat said that a background investigation showed that PO2 Enguio was a former member of the Muntinlupa City Police Station who was transferred to the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Police Regional Office after he was found to be included in the ‘narco-list’ of President Duterte in July 2016.
The cop was categorized as a ‘Level 2’ target in the President’s list which described him as a policeman involved in the distribution of drugs in Muntinlupa City.
The suspects are now being held at the PNP-CITF headquarters in Camp Crame facing charges for violation of Presidential Decree 455 or illegal cockfighting.
Caramat said they will also recommend the filing of administrative charges against the policeman who was supposed to be in Basilan when arrested.
The official called anew on the public to report police abuses, irregularities and anomalies thru their 24/7 Text and Call hotlines: 0998-970-2286 and 09995-795-2569 and thru ‘Counter Intelligence Task Force’ (@PNPCITF) on Facebook Messenger.
He explained that their investigations also led in the filing of administrative cases before the Internal Affairs Service against 66 policemen and criminal charges in court versus 85 errant cops and 21 of their civilian accomplices.
Caramat said that 173 complaints and information received by their office have been referred to the office of the Deputy Regional Director for Operations of the regional unit where the concerned policeman is assigned.
Caramat said that of the 13,481 complaints and information they received since February 3, 2017, 36 complaints involving 75 PNP personnel and civilians were referred for investigation while another 137 cases involving 180 PNP personnel and civilians were subjected to proper validation by concerned PNP units.