Eleazar fires entire Las Piñas police’s anti-drug unit after extortion
National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) Director Guillermo Eleazar has removed the Las Piñas Police chief and 32 operatives of the Las Piñas City Police’s Station Drug Enforcement Unit (SDEU) after a robbery-extortion incident.
“Malalim na imbestigasyon ang ginagawa po namin dito at actually, ‘yong buong unit po na ‘yon, 32 ay pina-relieve ko na po ‘yan, pati ‘yong hepe ng drug enforcement unit ng Las Piñas police,” Eleazar said in an interview with DZMM on Friday.
The NCRPO chief’s directive to relieve Las Piñas Police chief Sr. Supt. Marion Balonglong and his men came after a robbery-extortion incident in Cavite, where the SDEU operatives allegedly demanded P200,000 in exchange for the release of a drug suspect.
Eleazar said in a message to reporters that he has designated Sr. Supt Simnar Gran, chief of the NCRPO’s Regional Investigation and Detective Management Division to replace Balonglong effective on Friday.
Southern Police District (SPD) operatives tried to set-up an entrapment operation, but failed to arrest the four policemen involved. However, a 13-year-old student who was caught in the operation revealed the identities of the officers.
This latest incident of robbery-extortion involving policemen was not the first time. Other cases of robbery-extortion stemming from arrest of drug suspects and other incidents have also been reported, prompting the Philippine National Police (PNP) leadership to strengthen its internal cleansing program.
Eleazar said the police force will go after officers pursuing illegal profit-making schemes under the guise of “war on drugs.”
“Sabihin na natin na itong mga nagsusumbong, sila’y involved sa droga, pero hindi po pwedeng samantalahin ng mga tarantadong pulis itong ating campaign against illegal drugs at pagkakitaan nila,” he said. /kga
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