Thursday, June 23, 2016

DOJ Dismisses "tanim-bala" Cases Against Airport Police, Personnel They Blame Others

tanim bala, bullet planting, NAIA, NAIA Bullet Planting Scam,

Despite the video and witnesses, the Department of Justice (DOJ) has dismissed the complaints against policemen and security personnel of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) accused in a “tanim-bala (bullet-planting)” incident involving an American missionary Lane Michael White that happened last September.

In a resolution, Associate Prosecution Attorney II Honey Rose Delgado recommended the dismissal of the cases against airport baggage inspector Maria Cena, X-ray operator Marvin Garcia, and policemen – Chief Inspector Adriano Junio, SPO4 Ramon Bernardo, SPO2 Rolando Clarin, and SPO2 Romy Navarro.

Cena and Garcia were accused of planting evidence, while Junio, Bernardo, Clarin, and Navarro were accused of robbery/extortion.

The policemen, including Navarro, were also charged with violating Republic Act 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act) and Republic Act 7438 (An Act Defining Certain Rights of Person Arrested, Detained or Under Custodial Investigation as well as the Duties of Arresting, Detaining and Investigating Officers).

“We do not find probable cause to indict respondents for all the cases filed against them,” read the resolution.

The 20 years old American missionary Lane Michael White complained that the police officers asked him to pay P30,000 in exchange for dropping the charges against him after a bullet was found in his luggage at the NAIA last September 17, 2015 while he and his family were about to board a flight to Coron, Palawan.

“We believe complainant White that the .22 caliber ammunition found inside his luggage is not his,” read the resolution which noted that a court already dismissed the case against the American for illegal possession of ammunition.

“However, we cannot say with certainty that it was respondents Cena and Garcia who inserted or placed the ammunition inside complainant’s luggage,” it stressed.

The prosecutor said that there is “a high probability that the ammunition was planted by another person or stranger to the case.”

Delgado cited that the closed-circuit television (CCTV) camera footage did not show that the two airport security personnel planted anything in his luggage.

Though White underwent the initial security screening, Delgado noted that the flight was cancelled and his family had to stay overnight at the Executive Plaza Hotel.

“The luggage of complainant was left with the valet. The likelihood that the ammunition was planted during such time when the luggage was unattended is not remote,” she said.

Also, the prosecutor pointed out that upon careful evaluation of the incident “we believe that there are no sufficient proof to establish a case against SPO2 Clarin, PCINSP Junio, and SPO4 Navarro for robbery/extortion.”

“In robbery with intimidation of persons, the intimidation consists in causing or creating fear in the mind of a person or in bringing in a sense of mental distress in view of a risk or evil that may be impending, real or imagined. Records of the case failed to establish the element of intimidation,” the prosecutor explained.

Also the Kalibo, Aklan, Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 6 has dismissed the criminal case filed against a young couple Jerome Sulit and wife Rochelle who were caught carrying bullets at the Caticlan airport last April.

--- In my opinion the incoming DOJ secretary should look deeper into this and investigate Associate Prosecution Attorney II Honey Rose Delgado for incompetency regarding this matter. Why dismissed the case against the police who are clearly extorting money? Is she also blaming the Executive Plaza Hotel for it?


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