Alleged priest’s BF caught extorting cash from Sorsogon bishop

/ 05:47 PM June 20, 2016

LEGAZPI CITY, Philippines — A nurse who supposedly had a relationship with a priest was arrested for extorting money from the head of the Diocese of Sorsogon, police said Monday.

Senior Superintendent Rolando Cabral, director of Sorsogon provincial police, in a phone interview said the Diocese of Sorsogon, under Bishop Arturo Bastes, asked for help from the police after suspect Leo Funtanares, 26, of Gubat, Sorsogon threatened to reveal to the public his supposed romantic relationship with one of its priests unless the bishop gave him money. He first asked for P10 million but lowered his demand to P5 million.


Funtanares was arrested in an entrapment operation June 15. A case of robbery extortion was filed against him last Saturday.

On May 3, the suspect confessed that he and one of the priests in the Home of the Clergy were in a relationship. Investigation disclosed that Funtanares asked for help from Bishop Bastes to end their relationship but later changed his position to extorting money from the bishop.


On June 1, the bishop gave Funtanares P25,000 for the first installment and promised him more payments in the next transactions. The second transaction turned out to be the entrapment operation by police.

Recovered from the possession of the suspect were P25,000, two short brown envelopes containing receipts of the transaction and two cellphones.

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TAGS: Diocese of Sorsogon, extortion, Regions, Religion
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