PDEA intelligence chief, 15 charged with robbery before DOJ
MANILA, Philippines—The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Thursday filed a criminal complaint against ranking officials of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) for robbery with violence and intimidation.
In its complaint filed with the Department of Justice (DoJ), the NBI included as respondents PDEA’s Intelligence chief Zoilo Lachica Jr. and intelligence officers Marvin Mendoza, Jonathan Morales, Gregorio Camua, Virgilio Castillo II, Mark Anthony Omones, Laila Abad, Martin Francia, Alvin Morales, Dave James Curioso, Rodolfo Caisip Jr., Antonio Romero Jr., and Norman de la Cruz Daez. Also included in the complaint are civilians Ernesto Garcia Jr., Reynete de Isidro and Jonathan Gancuangco.
Former PDEA chief Jose Gutierrez Jr. has also been recommended by the NBI to be charged for violation of Presidential Decree 1829, or An Act Penalizing Obstruction of Apprehension and Prosecution of Criminal Offender, and Article 208 of the Revised Penal Code for Prosecution of Offenses; Negligence and Tolerance.
The NBI filed the case based on the complaint filed by Mark Sy Tan and his wife, Judy Tan.
The couple alleged that PDEA operatives arrested Mark on July 18, 2012 when he arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport. However, the copy of the warrant was not shown to him. He said the PDEA operatives also told him that members of the media were waiting for him at a press conference.
Mark said he was brought to the Intelligence and Investigation Service (IIS), where they were met by Romero and other IIS operatives. He said Romero told him that he should give P50 million for his release.
Eventually, the amount was reduced to P8 million. The amount, based on the complaint, was deposited to a bank account that was later divided among the respondents.
The NBI, in its complaint, said the instruction was only for mere casing and surveillance. It said there was no spot report or progress report submitted regarding Mark’s arrest.