In drug war, top cop vows to respect rights
TACLOBAN CITY—The new police director for Eastern Visayas has vowed to continue the campaign against illegal drugs but without violating human rights.
But Chief Supt. Gilbert Cruz, who took over the post on Aug. 30 after Chief Supt. Elmer Beltejar retired from service, said policemen should defend themselves if their lives were in clear danger during operations.
The campaign against illegal drugs in Eastern Visayas—composed of the provinces of Southern Leyte, Leyte, Biliran, Samar, Northern Samar and Eastern Samar—has resulted in the surrender of more than 42,244 drug dependents and the deaths of about 150 drug users and pushers.
“Among my focus is the campaign against illegal drugs. But (I) will make sure that rights (of suspects) will not be violated,” Cruz said on Tuesday.
Cruz said he would also implement internal cleansing in the regional police to rid the office of personnel involved in illegal activities. —JOEY A. GABIETA
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