Batangas ‘kotong’ cop falls

AGENTS of the Philippine National Police Intelligence Monitoring and Enforcement Group (PNP-IMEG) late evening Friday arrested a Batangas policeman accused of extorting money from a former overseas Filipino worker in Japan who personally sought the help of PNP chief, Director General Oscar D. Albayalde, PNP-IMEG director, Colonel Romeo M. Caramat Jr. announced yesterday.

The official identified the arrested suspect as Staff Sergeant Darwin M. Ona, a member of the Station Drug Enforcement Unit of the Mataas na Kahoy Municipal Police Station in Batangas.

Caramat said SSgt. Ona was arrested in an entrapment operation right inside the house of complainant Mrs. Maria Cecilia Yabut Ikeda in Purok 6, Barangay Inosluban in Lipa City at 10:40 p.m. Friday. Recovered from the policeman’s possession were P40,000 in marked bills given to him by the complainant.

According to the PNP-IMEG director, Mrs. Ikeda sought the help of Gen. Albayalde in going after the policeman whom she claimed was demanding an additional P40,000 ‘service fee’ from her.

An investigation showed that in 2014, the complainant returned to Lipa City from Japan to discover that almost all her real properties in Lipa City have been leased by her caretaker to a local bank without her consent.

Last June 25, the woman said she was introduced by one of her neighbors to a certain Air Force Colonel Maria Cecilia Christine Magnaye, Ona and a certain ‘Bill’ who all offered their help in settling her problem with the Land Registration Authority in exchange for some money.

Initially, the complainant said she gave P40,000 to the three. However, she complained that the trio started visiting her everyday and asking for money. The money she gave to the three rose to over P100,000, she claimed.

Caramat said last week, the complainant told PNP-IMEG investigators that the trio again approached her and told her they would be needing another P400,000 for the overall expenses they need in processing her land documents.

The PNP-IMEG director said that since she was out of cash that time, the trio convinced her to sell her Mitsubishi Montero to a colleague of the woman claiming to be Air Force Col. Magnaye.

Caramat said that the proceeds from the SUV’s sale was received by Magnaye from her buyer in the presence of Ona.

He said the woman got fed up when the trio failed to fulfill their promise and Ona showed up again in her residence on Friday morning forcing her to give him another P40,000 as ‘additional service fee.’

The ensuing entrapment operation led in the arrest of the Mataas na Kahoy policeman who was immediately taken to the PNP-IMEG headquarters in Camp Crame for further investigation and filing of criminal and administrative charges, said Caramat.

With Jun Christopher Balangalan