Ninja cops coddled?

Oscar Albayalde

Albayalde denies intervening in behalf of Central Luzon police officers ordered sacked over drug recycling case
PHILIPPINE National Police chief Oscar Albayalde yesterday said he is wondering about the motive of Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong in reviving the case of the Pampanga drug raid which took place when he was the head of the Central Luzon police.  

“I really don’t know, this probably has something to do with my retirement. Seemingly ang mga statements ni Gen. Magalong are personal already. Kita naman ng taumbayan kung paano, even taking words from the mouth of Gen. Aquino,” Albayalde said in an ambush interview.  

At the same time, Albayalde vehemently denied asking any favor for and influencing the case of Region 3 policemen ordered dismissed in 2014 over drug charges.

“Remember, General Aquino is class 85, you can never influence an upper class. Remember I was just a one star general then. Nakita nyo naman ang sinabi ni General Aquino, he was confused he doesn’t know bakit ang nagsasalita para sa kanya ay si General Magalong,” Albayalde said.  

At a Senate hearing on Tuesday, PDEA chief Director General Aaron Aquino disclosed that between July and December of 2016, Albayalde asked him about the status of the case, which stemmed from the anti-drug operation conducted in Pampanga in 2013.

At that time, Aquino was the director of the Police Regional Office 3 while Albayalde was the head of the National Capital Region Office (NCRPO).

But when the anti-drug operation was conducted in 2013, Albayalde was the director of the Pampanga Provincial Police Office.

Albayalde admitted asking Aquino about the status of the case.

“Yes, I asked for the status, only the status. I could not possibly influence an RD (regional director) or an upper class. Mr. chairman, I’m just the RD and acting RD of the NCRP then,” he told Senator Richard Gordon, chairman of the Blue Ribbon committee.

“But never (at anytime) that I asked for any favor,” Albayalde said. “I was asking for the status; that is the very reason why General Aaron here ordered for the review of the case which I think is normal in the process of the PNP, your honor.”

Aquino said a motion for reconsideration of the dismissal order against the cops was filed in March 2016.
Instead of implementing the dismissal order, then Central Luzon police chief now Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) chief Major General Amador Corpus ordered the demotion of the policemen in October 2017.

“I’m still the RD of NCRPO then. I became the chief of PNP on April 19, 2018 only. So I could not have influenced any of the decision of these people,” Albayalde said.

But when Gordon asked if he and Corpus were classmates, Albayalde answered yes.
“It’s just surprising to us here why General Corpus on his own would suddenly demote and amend the dismissal order of a high ranking general before him,” the senator said.

Albayalde pointed out that since Corpus was also assigned in Region 3, the latter also probably knew the policemen involved.