PNP: Albayalde innocent until proven guilty
MANILA, Philippines – Former Philippine National Police chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde is innocent until proven guilty, the PNP stressed on Friday, a day after the Department of Justice (DOJ) said it would pursue a case of graft against him.
PNP spokesperson Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac said the organization “respects” the findings of the DOJ.
“Former PNP chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde was given a fair chance to explain his side. Still, the DOJ panel found probable cause to indict him for graft,” he said in a statement.
“However, he remains innocent until proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt,” Banac pointed out.
In a resolution, the justice department said the graft case filed by the PNP-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group against Albayalde will be endorsed to the Office of the Ombudsman after it found probable cause to pursue the complaint.
The cases against Albayalde, however, for violation of the Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 for misappropriation, misapplication or failure to account for the confiscated, seized and/or surrendered dangerous drugs, as well as for falsification of public document, perjury, and dereliction of duty were dropped by the DOJ.
DOJ Undersecretary and Spokesperson Markk Perete explained that the dismissal of the case for violation of RA9165 will be reviewed while the other cases are dismissed for lack of probable cause.
Aside from the former PNP chief, also indicted for graft were Lieutenant Colonel Rodney Raymundo Louie Juico Baloyo IV; Lieutenant Joven Bagnot De Guzman, Jr.; Master Sergeant Jules Lacap Maniago; Master Sergeant Donald Castro Roque; Master Sergeant Ronald Bayas Santos, Master Sergeant Rommel Muñoz Vital; Master Sergeant Alcindor Mangiduyos Tinio; Staff Sergeant Dindo Singian Dizon; Staff Sergeant Gilbert Angeles De Vera; Staff Sergeant Romeo Encarnacio Guerrero, Jr.; Master Sergeant Eligio Dayos Valeroso; and Master Sergeant Dante Mercado Dizon.
They were likewise indicted for qualified bribery and for violation of RA 9165 specifically for misappropriation, misapplication or failure to account for the confiscated drugs, planting of evidence, and delay and bungling in the prosecution of drugs cases.
The police officers were linked to the anti-drug operation in Mexico, Pampanga on November 29, 2013 where they allegedly recycled 162 kilograms of shabu priced at P1.1 billion in today’s drug market, took a bribe, and arrested a fall guy.
Albayalde was the Pampanga provincial chief then.
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