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Danao orders stepped-up effort to account for service firearms of dismissed, suspended policemen

NATIONAL Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) director, Major General Vicente D. Danao Jr. has ordered an intensified effort to immediately account for service firearms of all dismissed or suspended members of the Metro Manila police force as part of their internal cleansing program.

Mamang PulisThe NCRPO chief’s order jibes with an instruction from Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, General Debold M. Sinas, for commanders to strip erring policemen under their command of their PNP-issued firearms and badges to prevent the possibility they may use them as ‘tools’ in committing other irregularities in the future.

“We’re hitting hard on misfits and scalawags in the organization specifically those directly or indirectly involved in illegal drugs and robbery-extortion activities regardless of their rank and position,” the top cop said.

Sinas early this month ordered the disarming of 16 policemen in the countryside who were accused of grave irregularities. He also ordered the filing of criminal and administrative charges against the accused who were all stripped of their guns and badges, relieved from their assignments and transferred to the respective Personnel Holding and Administrative Units of their regional offices.

In Metro Manila, Danao said they have accounted for a number of PNP-issued firearms still in the hands of some policemen who have been dismissed or suspended for involvement in grave criminal and administrative offenses.

On Wednesday last week, members of the Manila Police District (MPD) under Brigadier Gen. Leo M. Francisco arrested dismissed Police Officer 3 (PRO3) Rico Suarez in his hiding place in Barangay Liclic in Silang, Cavite.

Officers led by Lieutenant Colonel Noel Aliño, Major Rommel Anicete and Captain Alfredo Tan also recovered a PNP-issued Colt .38 caliber revolver with five ammunition from the possession of Suarez who is the subject of a warrant of arrest for rape.

The NCRPO Regional Task Group on Letter of Instruction (LOI) Bawi also recovered the issued firearms of three erring policemen following separate operations in Manila last week.

One of the three identified as dismissed Patrolman Eric Rano yielded a PNP-issued Colt .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol with a loaded magazine during an Oplan-Bawi operation on Inocencio Street in Tondo.

A 2nd policeman, AWOL Staff Sergeant Alfren Custodio, was also stripped of his PNP-issued Glock 9mm semi-automatic pistol with serial number PNP07249 with three loaded magazines during an operation in Tondo, Manila.

The 3rd cop identified as suspended Corporal Christopher Leaño was stripped of his PNP-issued Beretta 9mm semi-automatic pistol with serial no. N48967Z without magazine on Monday last week.

The Regional Task Group under the NCRPO Regional Logistics Division headed by Colonel Dario Menor said it will turn over the confiscated guns to the NCRPO Supply Accountability Officer.

As a rule, policemen who are under suspension or have been dismissed from the force are required to immediately turn over all their PNP-issued firearms and other accountable properties to the supply officer of their last unit assignment.

The immediate superiors of these suspended or dismissed policemen are also required by the PNP leadership to fully account for the service firearms of their erring personnel as soon as possible or they will face administrative charges for failure to do so.

The move aims to prevent the possibility that PNP-issued firearms may be used by dismissed or suspended policemen in committing other crimes or creating trouble in their neighborhood, and worse, harassing people who have filed criminal or administrative complaints against them.

In one case, a dismissed sickly Manila policeman killed himself with the use of his PNP-issued firearm which his superiors failed to confiscate from him.