Philippines

11 anti-drugs cops accused of killing 6 people relieved

Gen. Archie Francisco Gamboa, chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), ordered on Thursday the relief of a police major and 10 other members of a drug enforcement unit in Bulacan who allegedly killed six people and made it appear that they were illegal drug personalities who tried to fight it out with them during an operation.

Gamboa relieved all the 11 policemen led by Police Maj. Leo Commendador dela Rosa, the head of the San Jose Del Monte City Police Drug Enforcement Unit in Bulacan, and placed them under restrictive custody.

“I will not tolerate any wrongdoing in the service. Those accused must be made to answer for their criminal acts. In the meantime, it is best that they are relieved from duty to eliminate any suspicion of whitewash or coddling,” said Gamboa.

Aside from dela Rosa, also ordered relieved and placed under restrictive custody were Police Staff Sergeants Benjie Enconado, Jayson Legaspi, Irwin Yuson, Edmund Catubay Jr.; Police Corporals Jay Leoncio, Herbert Hernandez, Raymond Bayan, Raul Malgapo; and Patrolmen Erwin Sabido and Rusco Madla.

Gamboa’s order stemmed from the investigation report of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) stating that the policemen rounded up six persons who were passing by the house of an arrested drug pusher in Bulacan in February.

They were then forced to board a white van and later taken to the Drug Enforcement Unit of the police station where they were allegedly hogtied and detained. But their supposed arrest were not recorded,

From February 15 to February 18, the six arrested suspects ended up dead in various areas in San Jose del Monte in Bulacan, with the police claiming that they tried to engage the anti-narcotics cops in a gun battle during the operation to arrest them.

The anti-narcotics policemen even came up with the report that they tried to fight it out with cops and illegal drugs and guns were seized from them. (Aaron Recuenco)

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