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Exec busted for faking drug arrests

/ 12:54 AM May 29, 2011

A former councilor of Dapitan City has been busted, not for illegal drugs, but for faking drug busts in order to collect money from the government.

The Sandiganbayan Second Division sentenced Ricardo Inding to 6-10 years in prison and disqualified him from ever holding public office after it found him guilty of scamming the city government of P30,500.

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Inding was accused of faking drug busts against alleged drug pushers and users in 1997 and falsifying documents so that he could claim reimbursement for supposed expenses.

The antigraft court said Inding made it appear that he headed the committee on illegal drugs of the Sangguniang Panlunsod of Dapitan City, when no such committee existed.

What he chaired was the committee on tourism and he was also a member of the committees on youth and sports development, and on health and sanitation, the court said.

It said Inding’s confidential report on the supposed drug operations showed that surveillance, test buys and busts were conducted from January to August 1997, but only two arrests were made as shown by police records. The records, however, did not mention Inding or credit the arrests to his antidrug campaign.

The Sandiganbayan also said that the documents Inding submitted to support his reimbursement claims included community tax certificates whose dates of issuance did not tally with official records.

The tax certificates were issued to purported members of the raiding team by Inding’s cousin, barangay treasurer Efrina Inding.

The court said it got the impression that the members of the team were fictitious.

“In this case, accused created a fictitious committee that undertook fictitious activities involving fictitious persons, for the purpose of obtaining, as he obtained, a sum of money from government coffers. He did a wrong for his own interest. That is evident bad faith,” the Sandiganbayan said.

The court also noted that while Inding was given the opportunity to present evidence in his defense, he did not do so. Leila B. Salaverria

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TAGS: Faking Drug Busts, Illegal drugs, Ricardo Inding, Sandiganbayan Second Division
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