Kerwin’s logic: PNP has no proof I handled drugs — despite my admission
Confessed drug lord Kerwin Espinosa maintained that his Senate testimony detailing his illegal drug transactions in Eastern Visayas could not be used to indict him because the police found no evidence that he ever handled drugs.
“Since the government could not prove that I ever had ‘shabu’ in my possession, what would be the penalty that could be imposed on me?” the 38-year-old Espinosa said in his response-affidavit submitted Tuesday to a panel of Department of Justice (DOJ) prosecutors reinvestigating the case.
The panel was the second to be formed by the DOJ for another look into the drug trading charges filed by the Philippine National Police’s Criminal Investigation and Detection Group against Espinosa, alleged drug lord Peter Lim, convicted drug lord Peter Co and three others.
This was after the charges were dismissed by the DOJ in December due to weak evidence. The complaint was then based solely on the statements of Marcelo Adorco, an alleged drug dealer who turned state witness.
For the reinvestigation, the PNP-CIDG included transcripts of Espinosa’s testimony during the Senate investigation of the Nov. 5, 2016, police operation that resulted in the killing of his father, Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. of Albuera, Leyte, inside the Baybay City provincial jail.
In the Senate hearing, the younger Espinosa admitted his involvement in illegal drug activities and also identified his suppliers and the police officials whom he was paying for protection.
‘Stronger than shabu’
“My statements are a matter of record. However, the CIDG must be sniffing something stronger than shabu to think that such ‘admissions’ are sufficient for this honorable panel to hold that probable cause exists to indict me for violation of Republic Act 9165 (Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002),” he told the DOJ prosecutors.
Espinosa said the charges against him should be dismissed because the PNP did not find any drugs in his possession.
He also downplayed the CIDG’s submission of 37 checks he allegedly issued to several women in exchange for protecting his supposed drug business.
“Nobody but nobody would issue checks for an illegal transaction such as ‘protection in the illegal drug business.’ Everything would be in cash to avoid a paper trail,” Espinosa said.
Charged along with Espinosa were Lovely Impal, whom he identified in his Senate testimony as one of his suppliers; Ruel Malindangan; Max Miro and Noel Pepito.
Miro and Pepito, however, have passed away, the panel was told.
Senior Assistant State Prosecutor Juan Pedro Navera, the panel chair, gave the other respondents until May 30 to formally reply to the complaint against them.
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