MANILA – Two members of the Philippine National Police-Highway Patrol Group (PNP-HPG) were arrested for alleged extortion on van and truck drivers in Agusan del Sur.
In a report submitted to PNP chief, Gen. Archie Gamboa on Tuesday, Integrity Monitoring and Enforcement Group (IMEG) chief, Col. Ronald Lee identified the suspects as Staff Sgt. Eddie Manguilimotan, 54, of Mankilam, Tagum City, Davao del Norte; and Cpl. Ralfe Meraflor, 33, of Purok 13, Poblacion in Prosperidad town.
The suspects were arrested in an entrapment operation by members of the IMEG Mindanao Field Unit, Prosperidad Municipal Police Station and the Agusan del Sur Police Provincial Office’s Provincial Mobile Force in Purok 1, Barangay Patin-ay at around 9:30 p.m. Monday.
“This is in line with our continuing effort to identify and arrest ‘so-called ‘kotong’ policemen as part of the massive internal cleansing program ordered by Gen. Gamboa,” Lee said.
The suspects, who belong to the Agusan del Sur Provincial Highway Patrol Team of the PNP-HPG, were the subject of complaints mostly coming from drivers of delivery trucks and vans who claimed they were forced to shell money by the two each time they pass in their areas.
“We launched the entrapment operation shortly after our undercover officers validated the information following days of surveillance,” he said.
Lee said two police officers yielded PHP2,500 marked money paid by a poseur driver.
The suspects are now in the custody of the IMEG Mindanao Field Unit and will face robbery-extortion charges.
Lee said he will also recommend to PNP-HPG director, Brig. Gen. Eliseo Cruz the filing of administrative charges for grave misconduct against the two police officers.
Lee said complaints against rogue cops may be forwarded to the following PNP-IMEG hotline numbers: SMART – 09989702286 or GLOBE- 09957952569. Information may also be forwarded to Facebook Page: Integrity Monitoring and Enforcement Group.
“We assure that the identities of all complainants and providers of information about erring policemen will be kept in utmost secrecy. We also assure the public that all information is being subjected to full validation by our men prior to the launching of appropriate actions including entrapment and buy-bust operations,” Lee said. (PNA)