BAD karma caught up with a driver of a white taxicab who did not spare the Holy Week from his illegal activities.
The system on taxi queuing being implemented by the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) on orders of general manager Ed Monreal also proved to be really effective, as it resulted in the recent arrest of driver Orestes M. Quizon, 48 years old, married, with address in Las Pinas City. He was nabbed in a joint operation by the MIAA’s Airport Police and the Philippine National Police (PNP) after taking the cellphone and cash of a Filipino passenger who arrived from Hong Kong last April 17.
The said taxi queuing system includes the issuance of a dispatch slip to passengers, indicating the name of the passengers, their destination, plate number and operator’s name and contact numbers in case of complaints.
“We remind our passengers to make sure they keep the copy of their dispatch slips or take note of the plate number of the taxi they board for reference in case they have something to complain about,” said Monreal.
Monreal said that the OFW, identified as Karen Mitschel, arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2 from Hong Kong, queued at the secondary arrival curbside and hailed a white taxi cab to bring her and a female companion to the Five Star bus station along EDSA in Pasay City.
While enroute, the driver told them to pay P2,400, but since the two passengers only had foreign currency on hand, they requested the driver to bring them to a nearby foreign exchange shop to get change.
Upon arriving at the said shop, Mitschel’s companion got off the taxi then the driver hurriedly drove away with Mitschel still onboard.
Monreal, citing reports that reached his office, said that as per the account of Mitschel, the driver demanded that she give him her cellphone and money and threatened to shoot her if she did not.
Fearing for her life, Mitschel handed her cellphone and USD$40 to the driver, after which the driver dropped her somewhere along C-5 Extension near Gatchalian Village in Las Piñas City.
Still shocked from the harrowing experience, Mitschel immediately reported the incident at a nearby Police Station, with the PNP Officers later assisting her in going back to NAIA Terminal 2 to report the incident. Her companion also went back to NAIA Terminal 2 after the incident.
Investigators were able to identify the taxi company and get the plate number of the vehicle of the suspect, based on the MIAA copy of the dispatch slips.
That very same afternoon, investigators were able to contact a representative of the taxi company, who submitted a copy of the personal information of the driver, who turmed out to be Quizon.
According to the representative of the taxi company, Quizon was a newly-hired driver who did not remit his boundary for two consecutive days. They traced his driven taxicab through GPS, wherein they found the said taxicab abandoned at Calamansi Street in Las Piñas City.
The Parañaque-PNP turned over the case to the Las Piñas PNP for the filing of appropriate charges in court, since the incident occurred in their jurisdiction.
The suspect was later arrested and placed under the custody of the Las Piñas PNP for inquest proceedings.
MIAA police records show that back in August 2017, Quizon was also arrested for violation of Article 283 (light threats) when he tried to hit his passenger, a certain Diamla, with a tire wrench when the latter did not agree to the P1,250 fare being charged to him by Quizon.
Quizon reportedly had a rate tariff card that he shows to his passengers. After almost being hit by a tire wrench, Diamla was made to disembark in a dark area not mentioned in the report, while driver Quizon sped off.
The MIAA and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) has a joint task force conducting random check of transport services plying the NAIA route. In an effort to further ensure safety and security of commuters, the two agencies have initiated talks to adopt LTFRB rates for erring transport companies.
Regular white taxis are not accredited by the MIAA, but are allowed to take passengers based on public clamor for a choice to take regular metered taxis at the arrival curbside. Before the regular white taxis were allowed at the NAIA arrival curbside, many passengers would walk from the arrival area to the departure level or outside the NAIA Complex to get regular white taxis. At least at the MIAA taxi queue, dispatch slips can provide a record of the taxi that the passengers take from NAIA.
The MIAA has accredited transport services ranging from car rentals to metered taxis. Except for car rentals, all MIAA transport service rates are approved by the LTFRB. The rates are slightly higher than regular white taxis but their accreditation means that they are subject to MIAA rules and regulations governing the conduct of their business in NAIA. MIAA imposes fines and penalties for various violations when the need warrants.
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