Charges filed against Victoria Towers in Quezon City for allegedly detaining nurses

Coconuts Manila
·2 min read

Our healthcare workers do not deserve to be treated this way.

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) announced today that it filed illegal detention charges against the management and security staff of Victoria Towers in Quezon City for allegedly forcing three nurses to remain inside their unit.

Read: Nightingales in Peril: Filipino nurses put their lives on the line in the UK

In a statement posted online, the NBI identified the respondents as Mel Tosco, the condo’s administrative head; Napoleon Briñas, the head of security of San Jose Builders Incorporated (SJBI), which own the property; Jerich Jucaban, the vice president of SJBI; Sadat Macabanding, a security guard, as well as his other teammates; and five unidentified persons.

The NBI said that on Monday, it received a complaint from the three nurses “relative to their illegal confinement and restriction” inside their own unit. They were allegedly forced to stay inside their flat since June 22 by the management and security team of the condo.

The victims alleged that the suspects “had been illegally confining and restricting them in their condominium unit despite the fact that they have already presented to Subjects their medical clearances certifying that they are COVID cleared and thus, fit to return to work.”

Read: Cebu City nurses planning to quit as hospitals see spike in COVID-19 cases

When the NBI operatives arrived at the condo to rescue the victims, they were allegedly met by Briñas, Tosco, and a certain Neneth de Padua, who identified herself as the lawyer of the condo’s management. Despite the NBI’s explanation that the three victims are coronavirus-free, the three condo personnel allegedly refused to release the nurses because they are still waiting for the frontliners’ health clearance from village officials. However, the village chairwoman clarified that she does not have the authority to issue a clearance for the victims.

Tosco, Briñas, and de Padua continued to defy the NBI and allegedly refused to release the nurses, prompting the operatives to proceed to the ninth floor, where the victims’ unit was located, to rescue them. Tosco was arrested while Briñas escaped.

The suspects were charged for possibly violating Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code and Quezon City’s ordinance which prohibits discrimination against frontliners.

This article, Charges filed against Victoria Towers in Quezon City for allegedly detaining nurses, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company. Want more Coconuts? Sign up for our newsletters!