Mambaling cop in hot water for extorting motorist

A POLICEMAN assigned at the Mambaling Police Station in Cebu City is in trouble after he allegedly accepted bribe money from a motorist he caught for a traffic violation.

The suspect, whose name is withheld pending an investigation, was arrested in an entrapment operation conducted by members of the Integrity Monitoring and Enforcement Group (IMEG) Visayas Field Unit 7 and the Provincial Intelligence Unit at the parking lot of a private hospital in Barangay San Nicolas, Cebu City on Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2023.

The police officer, who holds the rank of Staff Sergeant, reportedly apprehended an unidentified motorcycle rider at a traffic checkpoint in Atillo Street, Barangay Mambaling.

The police officer reportedly asked the driver to pay a P1,500 so that his vehicle could be released from custody.

But instead of heeding the request, the rider went to the IMEG 7 office to report the incident.

Lieutenant Colonel Gerard Ace Pelare, spokesperson for Police Regional Office 7, said the entrapment operation is part of the internal cleansing program of the Philippine National Police to get rid of scalawag policemen.

“PRO 7 will never tolerate sa mga police scalawags, so usa ni sa example then of course the usual process will be undertaken. He will be given the opportunity to answer but ang klaro nga gi-emphasize gyud is we will not tolerate any wrongdoings in PRO 7,” Pelare said.

Pelare said PRO 7 Director Brigadier General Jerry Bearis was saddened of the incident and ordered to hasten the conduct of the investigation.

Meanwhile, Mambaling Police Station Chief Major Jonathan Taneo was shocked by the arrest of one of his subordinate, saying the latter performed well in his job.

He said has not known if the arrested police officer had any derogatory remark.

“Maayo na mo trabaho bataa, wala koy problema ana, wala sad ko makadungog nga gireklamo na diri nga nangwarta kay maniid man gyud ko sa akung mga personnel unya kana siya pamulis gyud nang iyaha,” Taneo said.

(He performs his job well. I don't have a problem with him; I also didn't hear any complaint about him extorting money because I constantly observed my personnel and this officer did his duty as a policeman).

Taneo said the complainant, whose real name is withheld, was even issued a citation ticket, which means that his traffic violation could not be resolved through negotiation.

The suspect will be facing administrative and criminal cases and possible dismissal from service if proven guilty. (AYB / TPT)