Albayalde on raps: No due process, mere hearsay
Former Philippine National Police chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde said he was denied due process in the revived criminal inquiry into his involvement with the so-called ninja cops operations in a 2013 police drug raid in Pampanga.
Albayalde appeared on Tuesday before the Department of Justice (DOJ) panel of prosecutors chaired by Senior Assistant State Prosecutor Alexander Suarez to formally dispute the charges filed against him.
After he resigned last month over the controversy, Albayalde was charged by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) with misappropriation of seized illegal drugs, graft, qualified bribery, falsification of public documents, perjury and dereliction of duty, along with 13 of his former subordinates in Pampanga.
The 13 police officers were accused of declaring only a fraction of the seized 200 kilograms of “shabu” and taking P55 million and a Toyota Fortuner in exchange for letting suspected drug lord Johnson Lee escape.
Albayalde was the Pampanga provincial police director when police conducted the Nov. 19, 2013, drug raid in Mexico town.
In his counteraffidavit, Alabayalde said the CIDG’s act of adopting a criminal complaint that had been dismissed by the DOJ in 2014 and merely adding his name as a respondent disregarded due process.
“The complaint should have been dismissed outright and I should not have been required even to file a counteraffidavit. To begin with, the filing of the amended complaint is highly irregular and unfair to me when it adopts the allegations in a previously dismissed complaint affidavit filed by the CIDG,” Albayalde said in his affidavit.
He said the CIDG relied “solely” on the allegations made against him before the Senate blue ribbon committee, which he branded as mostly “hearsay.”
Interior Secretary Eduardo Año on Tuesday said that since Albayalde has relinquished his post as PNP chief, it was no longer necessary to dismiss him.
Año said no administrative charge would be filed against Albayalde, as his liability was command responsibility which his resignation had rendered “a fait accompli, or moot and academic… as President Duterte had said.”
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