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BuCor demolishes 2-story ‘mini-mansion’ in Bilibid

/ 04:46 PM February 17, 2016

The Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) has dismantled a two-story posh structure owned by two inmates inside the New Bilibid Prison’s (NBP) Maximum Security Compound.

NBP Superintendent Richard Schwarzkopf said the two-story structure which was once a “mini-mansion” was owned by Tom Chua, a Chinese drug lord and Ben Marcelo who is serving a sentence for kidnap-for-ransom.

The two have been moved to Building 14, inside NBP’s Maximum Security Compound prior to the demolition. Building 14 houses the high risk inmates.

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Aside from dismantling the structure, authorities also confiscated contraband including flat screen televisions, mobile phones and Wi-Fi routers as part of BuCor’s weekly Oplan Galugad. Oplan Galugad is the series of raids being conducted inside the national penitentiary to rid it if contraband and illegal activities. The Galugad team has already conducted 18 series of raids.

The recent raid was conducted Wednesday morning at Quadrants 2 and 3 of the Maximum Security Compound. It covers Building 13 where the Ilocano group is housed.

“We are getting fewer illegal items. We will continue this until we are sure that the smuggling of illegal items inside prison have stopped,” Schwarzkopf said in a phone interview.

On Tuesday, the authorities recovered 48 grams of methamphetamine (shabu) and one mobile phone hidden between walls in a special operation conducted by prison authorities.

Schwarzkopf said they conduct special operation if they receive tips of illegal activities inside prison.

“This is apart from the ‘Oplan Galugad.’ Once we receive the information, we immediately conduct the operation,” he said.

Following the dismantling of the structure, Schwarzkopf said a structure will be put in place to house the elderly inmates.

Last week, a “kubol” used by convicted robber Herbert “Ampang” Colangco was also demolished by the authorities.

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Colangco was the leader of the Ampang Colangco robbery group that figured in several bank heists in Pampanga, Quezon City and Parañaque in the early 2000s.

Last month, BuCor personnel also demolished a kubol inside the maximum security compound where a small swimming pool and a lounge were located.

The kubol was allegedly owned by inmate Jerry Pepino who was detained at the NBP since 1993 after being convicted on kidnap for ransom charges.

To accommodate the growing population of inmates at the NBP and to erase the perception of favoritism, Schwarzkopf said they intend to build dormitories inside the maximum security compound.

Earlier, the BuCor admitted that that one of their problems that aggravating the situation inside the NBP is overcrowding, citing as an example the maximum security compound which is meant to house only 6, 000 inmates but now has more than double that number. IDL

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TAGS: `oplan galugad’, Ben Marcelo, Bilibid, Bureau of Corrections, New Bilibid Prison, Tom Chua
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