Diaz, Loot ready to face probe to clear names | Inquirer News

Diaz, Loot ready to face probe to clear names

/ 02:22 AM July 06, 2016

CEBU CITY—“God knows there is no truth to that, my conscience is clear,” said Chief Supt. Bernardo Diaz, the former Western Visayas police director named on Tuesday by President Duterte as one of the five officials allegedly involved in criminal drug activities.

Diaz said in a telephone interview he did not know why Mr. Duterte had implicated him in illegal drugs.


“I will submit myself for investigation in Camp Crame,” he said. “I hope the investigation will be conducted immediately so I can clear my name.”

Retired Chief Supt. Vicente Loot, the newly elected mayor of Daanbantayan in northern Cebu, said he would also subject himself to any investigating body and would even see the President to clear himself.


“I can never be a protector [of illegal drugs] because I was not involved in any antidrug operations and anticriminality campaign,” he said in an interview over TV Patrol Cebu.

Chief Supt. Edgardo Tinio likewise denied he had protected drug peddlers during his term as Quezon City police chief.

“I have never dipped my hands in illegal activities, adding that he was open to a lifestyle check.

“My concern now is my family who may be affected by this. I know I can defend myself because I know the truth,” Tinio said in an interview over dzMM radio.

Chief Supt. Joel Pagdilao, former National Capital Region Police Office chief, said he was “not a protector of illegal drugs” and was saddened by the President’s accusations. “In my 32 years in service, my work has never been tainted,” he said. “Whatever the investigation takes. I am ready to defend myself and my family name.”


Worried, saddened


Diaz  said he was worried and saddened about how the accusations would affect his parents, siblings and family.

“Those who worked with me know my record. I have never been involved or implicated in anything illegal. I am confident that I will be cleared,” he said.

Diaz was among those relieved of his post in the reshuffling of the Philippine National Police.

He was relieved effective July 1 and replaced by Chief Supt. Jose Gentiles, his classmate in Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Class of 1984.

Diaz was not given a new assignment but was ordered to report to Camp Crame.

He was assigned as Western Visayas director in June last year and is set to retire from the service in March next year.

Diaz was among four top officials who drew controversy after they were spotted by reporters on April 2 at one of the function rooms of the Novotel Manila in Araneta Center with persons identified with Liberal Party (LP) standard-bearer Mar Roxas.

Black propaganda

The reporters were attending a press seminar at a separate function room across the room where the police officials were seen in a meeting with LP personalities.

Diaz denied to the Inquirer that he was at the hotel.

Loot, for his part, lamented that he had always been subject of black propaganda especially during elections since his family members were into politics.

His wife, Maria Luisa, was mayor of Daanbantayan—a post that he now occupies after retiring from the police force in 2015. His stepson, Sun Shimura, is provincial board member.

In the May 9 polls, Loot defeated incumbent Mayor Augusto Corro by mere seven votes.

In a television interview, Loot said the allegations raised by the President may be linked to the 2013 white paper that surfaced when he was about to be selected Manila Police District  chief by Mayor Joseph Estrada.

It was a letter purportedly from the Office of Rep. Lucy Torres of Leyte’s fourth district, alleging that Loot was protecting the entry of illegal drugs intended for Eastern and Central Visayas.  With reports from Nestor P. Burgos Jr., Connie Fernandez, Jhunnex Napallacan and Carmel Loise Matus, Inquirer Visayas; and Marlon Ramos and Jaymee T. Gamil in Manila

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TAGS: Chief Supt. Bernardo Diaz, drug lords, Drugs, Nation, News, Retired Chief Supt. Vicente Loot, Rodrigo Duterte
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