By Aaron B. Recuenco and Jel Santos
Five of the seven policemen who allegedly demanded a kilo of shabu as ransom from a girlfriend of a New Bilibid Prison (NBP) inmate they abducted have surrendered after an irate President Duterte had offered a P2-million bounty for their arrest or neutralization.
Chief Supt. Dionardo Carlos, spokesman of the Philippine National Police (PNP), said those who surrendered are all members of the Malabon City Police Drug Enforcement Unit (DEU) and earlier made surrender feelers after their names cropped up in a kidnapping case. He identified them as Police Officer 3 Luis Hizon Jr., PO2 Michael Angelo Solomon, PO2 Michael Huerto, PO1 Jovito Roque Jr., and PO1 Ricky Lamsen.
According to Northern Police Director (NPD) Chief Supt. Roberto Fajardo, the five policemen, who went into hiding in Palawan, contacted Deputy Director General Ramon Apolinario.
“They told Gen. Apolinario that they want to surrender. The five DEU cops of Malabon were later fetched by members of the Criminal Investigation Task Force at around 9 p.m. at NAIA,” Fajardo told the Manila Bulletin.
Last Monday, four other Malabon policemen were arrested for abducting and extorting money from the girlfriend of the inmate, a convicted carjacker. They were identified as Senior Police Officer 2 Ricky Pelicano, PO2 Wilson Sanchez, PO1 Joselito Ereneo, and PO1 Frances Camua.
“They are now facing criminal charges for robbery, kidnapping, carnapping, and planting of evidence. They are also facing separate administrative charges,” said Carlos.
The surrender of the five Malabon cops left the PNP with only two other policemen to hunt down. They are SPO2 Jerry dela Torre of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, and PO3 Bernardino Pacoma of the Civil Security Group. Fajardo said Dela Torre and Pacoma were formerly assigned to the anti-drugs unit of the Malabon Police.
The case stemmed from the kidnapping of a 53-year-old girlfriend of the NBP inmate in Quezon City wherein they allegedly forced her to produce a kilo of shabu reportedly with her drug lord contacts to secure her release.
Also, the cops allegedly took her car, cash and personal belongings before she was taken to the Malabon City DEU detention cell while the negotiation for shabu and additional P1 million is ongoing.
The modus was known after relatives of the female victim sought for police assistance, through the Counter-Intelligence Task Force (CITF) which mapped out an entrapment operation during the supposed payoff of P1 million in a Malabon mall.
When the erring cops sensed that it was a bust, they left the area and used the kilo of shabu they earlier received to file drug charges against the woman.
“They were detained after the mandatory booking procedures with the consent of their lawyer. They will be under the restrictive custody of the CITF,” said Carlos.
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