‘Palit-puri’ case: 2 QC cops sued for rape
The National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) has filed rape cases against two police officers from the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) with PO1 ranks for allegedly forcing a woman to have sex in exchange for her freedom.
Reports from NCRPO on Wednesday stated that “Maria,” not her true name, was arrested by QCPD operatives along with five other women last Saturday for violation of the Stiffer Penalties on Illegal Gambling, or Presidential Decree No. 1602.
During a medical examination at the Quezon City General Hospital, she asked police officers to set her free as her live-in partner was also detained for the same case at QCPD’s Novaliches Police Station.
However, a policeman she identified as “Montalban” — later identified as PO1 Severiano Montalban III from Camarin in Caloocan City — asked for sex in exchange.
After having sex with Maria, Montalban allegedly passed her on to another officer, identified as PO1 Jayson Portuguez, 29, from Barangay Kaybiga in Caloocan City, who reportedly did not have intercourse with her but forced her to do other sexual acts.
Following complaints filed by Maria to the NCRPO’s Regional Women and Children’s Protection Desk, the two suspects were arrested. Portuguez was caught on Wednesday morning while Montalban surrendered hours later.
Cases for violation of for violation of R.A. 8353 The Anti-New Rape Law of 1997 against Portuguez and Montalban, who are both under NCRPO’s custody, have already been referred before the Quezon City Prosecutor’s Office.
The new incident comes three days after the Philippine National Police (PNP) leadership dismissed a recent “palit-puri” (sex in exchange for freedom) scheme as an isolated case. PNP Chief Director General Oscar Albayalde previously said claiming that the scheme is rampant comes too harsh and unfair for the police force.
According to NCRPO chief Director Guillermo Eleazar, their discovery is unfortunate as it seems to solidify the criticisms hurled at the PNP. Just recently, a non-government organization (NGO) claimed that the current administration’s war on illegal drugs worsened the palit-puri scenario.
“The timing of this incident comes at the worst time. As police critics are still hitting the organization for the recent rape incident involving another policeman whom we arrested, this one now comes as if to confirm what some critics are saying,” Eleazar confessed.
The NCRPO chief also pleaded to victims of police abuse to file their complaints, and guaranteed that the entire PNP is willing to act on it.
“I encourage more victims of police abuse to come forward so we can really send the message to our policemen that reform is at hand. The PNP with our chief, PDG Oscar David Albayalde leading the way, is determined to rid our ranks of undeserving policemen,” Eleazar explained.
“At least, now, the complainants are coming out. At least now, victims know that the police institution is on their side and shall not tolerate these police abuses. I ask more victims to come to us with their complaints. And I assure the public that we will put these police scalawags in jail,” he added.
Eleazar also admitted that he is bothered with the number of junior officers involved in the violations, saying that there is a need for reforms in the recruitment process of police officers.
“We must be able to screen our applicants well. We have instituted reforms in our recruiting process as well to try to ensure the quality of our new policemen,” he said. /je
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