THE National Bureau of Investigation has filed serious illegal detention charges against officials and security personnel of a condominium in Quezon City for allegedly detaining three nurses whom they suspected of being infected with COVID-19.
NBI Officer-In-Charge Eric B. Distor identified the suspects as Mel Tosco, Property Manager/Administrative Head of Victoria Towers Condominium, Napoleon Briñas, Head, Security Management of San Jose Builders Inc., Atty. Jerich Jucaban (Vice-President, SJBI), security guard Sadat Macabanding, and other still unidentified condo guards, and several other individuals.
Distor said that on June 29, the NBI-Special Action Unit (NBI-SAU) received a complaint from three nurses that they were allegedly being illegally detained in their condominium unit for more than three days by the management and security of VTC.
This despite the fact that they have already presented their medical clearances certifying that they are COVID cleared and thus, fit to return to work.
After verification of the complaint, Distor said that NBI-SAU operatives hatched an operation to rescue the complainants.
Upon arrival at the condominium tower, NBI-SAU operatives were met by the suspects who allegedly still refused to let go of the nurses as they are still awaiting clearance from the barangay.
During dialogue, the barangay chairperson said she does not issue COVID-19 health clearance "in deference to Infectious Control Consultants," and that the barangay's role is limited only to monitoring and providing basic assistance to patients and suspected patients.
This prompted the NBI operatives to rescue the nurses despite the refusal of the condo management.
Charges for serious illegal detention under Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code, as amended and Quezon City Executive Order No. 26 s.2020 (Protection of COVID-19 patients/frontliners from any kind of discrimination) were filed against the suspects.