THE Philippine National Police Drug Enforcement Group and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency yesterday together protested the Department of Justice’s decision to release jailed drug trafficking suspect Marine Lieutenant Colonel Ferdinand Marcelino and a Chinese interpreter calling it a “dangerous precedent” that would affect the morale of honest-to-goodness anti-narcotics officers.
In a statement, the PNP-DEG said the DoJ’s action would set a “dangerous precedent” for the government’s future drug operations. “This group is wary that the said decision lays a dangerous precedent on drug operations being conducted by law enforcement agencies, since according to DoJ ruling on the Marcelino case, prior coordination with PDEA (Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency) is dispensable as long as an arrested person will be able to obtain a certification from the AFP (Armed Forces of the Philippines), NBI (National Bureau of Investigation) or any other Law Enforcement Agency that he/she is sharing vital information on illegal drugs, even if the said certification does not necessarily state that said sharing pertains to the operations he/she is arrested for,” the PNP-DEG said in a statement.
“The said resolution likewise wants us to believe a sheer allegation of an arrested intelligence officer that after he/she managed to get hold of the drugs, he/she will eventually tell the Law Enforcement Agencies [and that] he/she is sharing the information about the drugs he confiscated, even if said Law Enforcement Agency has no prior knowledge of the fact that he will confiscate the said drugs,” it added.
The PNP-DEG also asserted that the DoJ action in the Marcelino case lacked transparency and was “unacceptable in any Law Enforcement Operation,” and officials likewise accused DoJ Undersecretary Deo Marco, the one who signed the 13-page resolution, of violating the “built-in safety nets of RA 9165.
PNP-DEG and PDEA officials said they would team up to exert all legal efforts to seek the reversal of the DoJ resolution which led to the release of Marcelino.