MANILA – Authorities nabbed a police officer for allegedly using a motorcycle seized during an anti-drug operation in Marikina City, the anti-scalawag unit of the Philippine National Police (PNP) said Wednesday.
In a press statement, the Integrity Monitoring Enforcement Group (IMEG) chief Brig. Gen. Ronald Lee identified the suspect as Pat. Orlando Estrella Perez, 43, a resident of Calumpang, Marikina City, and currently assigned at the Regional Drug Enforcement Unit of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO).
Perez was arrested in his residence during an operation at around 4:50 p.m. Tuesday.
The suspect yielded one black Yamaha Mio motorcycle with plate number 1303-0575580 (carnapped), his issued firearm, and two magazines without ammunition.
The operation stemmed from intelligence information stating that the suspect was possessing and using a carnapped motorcycle which was confiscated during an anti-drug operation in the city on April 5.
Further investigation showed that the motorcycle was not included in the list/inventory of confiscated pieces of evidence seized during the said police operation.
Lee said Perez did not declare the recovery of the motorcycle owned by the arrested drug suspect as part of the evidence and instead used it as his personal service vehicle.
“There will be no respite in the crackdown against scalawags amid the enhanced community quarantine against Covid-19. This is in line with our continuing effort to identify and arrest PNP personnel who illegally use recovered and carnapped vehicles and motorcycles that were inventoried as evidence in police operations as part of the massive internal cleansing program ordered by the PNP chief Gen. Archie Gamboa,” Lee said.
The suspect is now under the custody of the PNP-IMEG for proper disposition and filing of appropriate charges.
Gamboa reiterated an earlier directive against the use of recovered vehicles and motorcycles based on Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) No. 7.
Under SOP No. 7 or the Revised Procedure in the Reporting and Disposition of Stolen and Recovered/Impounded Motor Vehicles released on April 12, 2011, no PNP personnel shall use a recovered-stolen or impounded motor vehicle or cause the use thereof by any person prior to the lifting of the “alarm” issued thereon and the subsequent release of the said motor vehicle to its lawful owner.
In a statement, NCRPO director Maj. Gen. Debold Sinas asked Lee to pursue the filing of criminal and administrative charges against the suspect and to determine his other possible cohorts.
Perez was discovered to be part of the remnants of the NCRPO personnel who were suspected to be involved in drugs, specifically pilferage of evidence and “hulidap” but was not reported.
Sinas said that all personnel of the Regional Drug Enforcement Unit of the NCRPO will be relieved and reassigned to other NCRPO units and they will also be subjected to a drug test on Wednesday.
He said an investigation is still ongoing and joint tactical interrogation will be conducted by the IMEG and Regional Special Operations Group (RSOG) to ascertain the depth of their involvement in illegal drug activities in NCRPO.
“Our invigorated internal cleansing effort subsists despite the stringent call of duty we are facing in the front lines amid this health crisis. May this serve as a warning to other erring police officers out there, that NCRPO will not cease in its effort to cleanse its ranks from scalawags who taint the good image of this noble organization,” Sinas said. (PNA)