PNP chief Gen. Archie Gamboa

MANILA – A total of 4,208 erring police officers were dismissed from the service as part of the intensified internal cleansing program of the Philippine National Police (PNP), its chief said on Friday.

Citing latest data, Gen. Archie Gamboa said these are among the 14,523 erring personnel who were sanctioned from July 2016 to June 15, 2020.

Also included in the figure are 7,376 police officers who were suspended, 1,345 reprimanded, 770 demoted, 559 with salaries forfeited, 101 restricted to quarters, and 164 with withheld privileges.

“Under the PNP’s Internal Cleansing Program, we continue to monitor dismissed personnel to check if they are still involved in illegal activities,” Gamboa said in a statement.

He added that if these dismissed PNP members are still engaged in illegal activities, they will be treated as ordinary civilian criminals.

In a recent accomplishment report of the PNP Anti-Kidnapping Group (AKG) in coordination with Rapid Deployment Battalion–Special Action Force, a dismissed police officer, Pat. Rico Gutierrez, was killed along with his cohort, Jose Pitarque Alcaria, and a still unidentified suspect in an operation in Barangay Behia in Tiaong town, Quezon province on Thursday.

AKG reports indicated that the operation was aimed only at serving search warrants against Gutierrez and Alcaria issued by the Santa Cruz, Laguna Regional Trial Court for illegal possession of firearms.

However, Gutierrez fired upon the arresting officers, prompting them to retaliate.

The gunfight lasted for 15 minutes which resulted in the death of the three suspects.

Gutierrez was formerly assigned at the Quezon Police Provincial Office (PPO) as an intelligence officer.

After his stint at the Quezon PPO, he was reassigned at the Police Regional Office–Bangsamoro Autonomous Region but apparently went on absent without official leave (AWOL) status that led to his dismissal from the police service.

Meanwhile, police discovered that Gutierrez is a nephew of Jaime Moog, a kidnapping suspect included in the ‘national most wanted persons’ list of the Department of the Interior and Local Government with a bounty of PHP500,000.

Gutierrez was the one who hid his uncle at the farm where the armed encounter happened but Moog was not in the area, AKG added.

Recovered from the crime scene were assorted firearms, 100 grams of suspected shabu, and other drug paraphernalia. (PNA)