DEADLY threats posed by the COVID-19 virus to their health won’t stop agents of the Philippine National Police Integrity Monitoring and Enforcement Group (PNP-IMEG) from arresting rogues in uniform specifically those taking advantage of the present crisis to extort money from their targets, the head of the police counter-intelligence unit said yesterday.
Since last February 27, the PNP-IMEG headed by Colonel Ronald O. Lee had already arrested 10 erring policemen, a dismissed policewoman and three civilians acting in cahoots with some of the now jailed rouge police personnel.
“We’re acting on all complaints being sent to our hotlines and are seeing to it that they will be immediately and thoroughly validated by our undercover officers prior to the conduct of actual entrapment operations,” said the member of Philippine Military Academy ‘Tanglaw Diwa’ Class of 1992.
The official said an information forwarded to them led in the arrest on Tuesday of the officer-in-charge of the Buenavista Municipal Police Station in Agusan del Sur for extorting money from local furniture makers.
In a report to PNP chief, General Archie Francisco F. Gamboa, the official identified the suspect as Captain Junil A. Gultiano.
“We have arrested another police officer accused of extortion in line with our continuing implementation of Gen. Gamboa’s directive to go after rogues in uniform regardless of their rank and stature.” Lee said.
According to Lee, the suspect was placed under arrest during an entrapment operation inside the Buenavista police station shortly after he received a marked P1,000 bill from a complainant.
He said that the furniture makers sought their assistance in arresting the police officer whom they accused of demanding P500 a week from each of their members apart from asking an additional P5 per board feet of every lumber product they would sell.
“One of the complainants said the accused asked them to give him P500 every week in exchange for the unhampered operations of their business. Accordingly, he threatened the local furniture makers that if they will not comply with his monetary demand, he will raid their stores and arrest them,” Lee said.
Last March 19, PNP-IMEG operatives, with the help of officers from the Police Regional Office 4-A under Brig. Gen. Vicente D. Danao Jr. also arrested three members of the Drug Enforcement Unit of the Candelaria Municipal Police Station in Quezon.
The three Quezon policemen were arrested inside their safehouse which was raided by PNP-IMEG agents following the arrest of one of their civilian cohorts while in the act of making a series of cash withdrawals from the ATM account of their victim.