12 QC residents first to fall in NCRPO crackdown on gambling at wakes
MANILA, Philippines — Twelve people in Quezon City were the first to be arrested in Metro Manila from Tuesday evening until early Wednesday as the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) intensified its crackdown on illegal gambling.
All of the suspects were caught gambling while attending separate wakes.
Three were apprehended while playing “cara y cruz” at a wake on Sampaguita Street in Barangay Holy Spirit at 10:45 p.m. Tuesday.
A total of P1,200 in bets were seized from Jacel Ortiz, 40; Eric Sabido, 30; and Eric Villanueva, 42, all residents of nearby Barangay Commonwealth.
The nine additional suspects, on the other hand, were caught playing card games while attending a wake on Everlasting Street in Barangay Payatas at 1:30 a.m. Wednesday.
Two were identified as Arnel Arranquez, 24; and Godwin Soria, 41; both from Barangay Commonwealth. The seven others, all residents of Everlasting Street in Payatas, were Rodel Dumpay, 39; Jayson Nacita, 30; Harold Barcelon, 30; Michael Mendonza, 33; Bryan Alex Porte, 23; Mark Dumlao, 34 and Emmanuel Siblario, 31.
They were taken to the Quezon City Police District headquarters at Camp Karingal and charged with violation of Presidential Decree No. 1602, amended by Republic Act 9287.
According to NCRPO chief Maj. Gen. Debold Sinas, the separate operations were conducted based on a tip from a barangay official who noticed that some residents would flock to wakes at nearby villages.
On Monday, Sinas said that card and board games at wakes would not be spared in the NCRPO’s operations against illegal gambling.
He had added that out of consideration to the bereaved family, the police would ask them to stop the attendees from gambling.
“But if they will not [do so], policemen will raid the wake,” Sinas warned.
Card games such as “tong its,” “sakla” and “pusoy” as well as Bingo and “mahjong” are common at wakes in poor communities with a portion of the winnings going to the relatives of the dead to help pay for burial expenses.
The police, however, said it had received information that some criminal syndicates were using wakes as a front for their illegal gambling activities.
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