Police to probe possible Resorts World Manila security lapses
The Philippine National Police (PNP) will investigate the lapses committed by security personnel and the management of Resorts World Manila after a lone gunman was able to sneak a high-powered gun into the upscale casino-hotel complex.
“We will look into the lapses in the implementation of the security measures and if there is an appropriate administrative sanction that (is for what may be) considered (a) grave offense,” PNP Supervisory Office for Security and Investigation Agencies (Sosia) Chief Supt. Jose Mario Espino told reporters at Camp Crame on Friday.
It was initially reported that heavily armed men in black masks stormed Resorts World casino but police later said there was only one gunman, who burned casino tables after stealing P113 million gambling chips.
The man, believed to be a foreigner, left his loot in a restroom and later set himself on fire inside a room at the Maxim’s Hotel connected to the casino.
More than 30 people died from suffocation after the establishment was put on lockdown following the attack.
“Ang lapses doon talaga ‘yung manner of checking of the clients of the establishment hindi siguro na-institute properly kasi nakarating pa sa second floor, naka-park at nakapasok pa with a firearm so ‘yun ang iimbestigahan natin lapses ng guards (The lapse there was the manner of the checking of the clients of the establishment was probably not instituted properly, that’s why the suspect still got to the second floor, park his vehicle and enter the premises with a firearm, so we will investigate the lapses of the guards) on the performance of their duty and how the management enforced security measures there,” Espino said.
Majority of security guards in the casino were hired by N.C. Lanting Security Specialist Agency, according to Espino.
Last year, the agency sought a permit from SOSIA to allow its personnel to use high-powered firearms, a caliber 5.56 mm, within the Resorts World compound.
SOSIA approved the permit, valid until July 31, 2017. But since President Rodrigo Duterte declared martial law in Mindanao on May 23, private security agencies have been directed to surrender all their high-powered guns to the PNP Civil Security Group.
Espino said they are waiting for the security agency’s report on the incident.
“The agency is required within 24 hours to submit an initial report so we are waiting for that report to start our investigation,” he said.
Next week, the Sosia will summon the management and the security guards who were on duty at the time of the incident. IDL/rga
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