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LRTA warns commuters: No bomb jokes, or else …

By Riza T. Olchondra
Inquirer
First Posted 03:34:00 05/03/2007

Filed Under: Local authorities, Road Transport

MANILA, Philippines ? Following an airport policy, passengers making jokes about having a bomb in their possession run the risk of facing charges, the Light Rail Transit Authority warned yesterday.

The LRTA, which manages Light Rail Transit Lines 1 and 2, issued the warning after three women were apprehended in separate incidents on Monday, May 1, for creating panic among passengers.

?We would like to ask the public not to make any bomb jokes at all LRT lines because it is a very sensitive issue. A bomb scare joke is no laughing matter. If you want to have fun, try not to do it at the expense and risk of hurting other people,? LRTA Administrator Mel Robles said.

He added that they will not hesitate to file a case against individuals who put the lives of LRT passengers in danger.

One of three women apprehended was identified as Noraina Langco, a native of Marawi City.

She was taken into custody after she told a security guard at the LRT Line 1 Baclaran station that there was a bomb in her bag.

Langco was taken into custody and charged with making a false bomb threat in violation of Presidential Decree No. 1727. An additional charge of unjust vexation was also filed against her for making a rude gesture at the guards who were investigating her. She was later released after posting a bail of P12,000.

The two other women apprehended were students of the Philippine School of Business Administration who joked about having a bomb while their bags were being inspected at the LRT Line 2 Katipunan station.

They were taken for questioning by security guards, but the LRTA did not file charges of alarm and scandal against them because both were minors. The students were released to their parents, with a warning against making similar jokes in the future.

The LRTA, meanwhile, filed a case against two Germans who kicked a female guard after she refused to let them into the station because they were allegedly drunk. Helmut Scheithauer, 53, and Karl Heinz Merz, 55, were later released on bail.



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