DOJ may issue travel alert order vs suspects in Dacera rape-slay

Robie de Guzman   •   January 5, 2021   •   705

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Justice (DOJ) on Tuesday said it may issue a travel alert order against the suspects in the rape-slay case of 23-year-old flight attendant Christine Angelica Dacera.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said the travel alert will be issued as soon as appropriate charges have been filed with the prosecutor’s office.

“For now we’ll let the PNP (Philippine National Police) handle the case. As soon as the police file a complaint with the prosecutor’s office, we may issue a travel alert order to the BI,” Guevarra said in a message to reporters.

Three persons tagged in the killing have been placed under police custody while other suspects remain at large.

Police said the three have been charged with rape and homicide.

A manhunt operation will also be launched against nine other people who were present in the party before Dacera was found dead.

Police initial investigation showed that Dacera was invited to a party with some friends at the City Garden Hotel in Makati City on December 31.

It was also learned that other than Dacera and her friends, other people were also present in the party.

She was found lifeless in a bathtub in the hotel around noontime on January 1.

Police said that while Dacera suffered from aneurysm, investigators found laceration and bruises on her body, and other markings that indicate sexual contact.

The final autopsy report is expected to be released soon. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Dante Amento)

DOJ wants review of cops’ administrative, criminal liabilities in anti-illegal drug ops

Marje Pelayo   •   February 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Justice (DOJ) Inter-Agency Review Panel has submitted to the President and furnished a copy to the Philippine National Police (PNP) its preliminary findings in the conduct of anti-illegal drug operations of law enforcement personnel. 

The review covered the 328 cases of the thousands of illegal drug operations conducted since President Duterte assumed office in 2016.

According to DOJ Undersecretary Adrian Sugay, their recommendations include a review of possible administrative and criminal liabilities of erring cops that result in the death of suspects.

The PNP is expected to release its report on the matter in the first week of March.

The DOJ assures that all policemen who are involved in such cases will be held accountable based on the result of their review.

This came after an incident that happened in Quezon City where members of the PNP and agents from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) engaged in a shootout in an alleged anti-illegal drug operation.

“Any and all possible administrative/criminal liability against those involved in these anti-illegal drug operations where deaths occurred may be pursued depending on any further findings/recommendations,” Usec. Adrian Sugay stressed. (MNP with reports from Dante Amento)

DOJ orders NBI to probe PNP-PDEA ‘misencounter’

Robie de Guzman   •   February 25, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Justice (DOJ) has directed the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to conduct its own probe into the shooting incident that transpired between members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) on Wednesday night.

The shooting incident between operatives of the PNP and PDEA occurred near a mall along Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City.

“This is separate and distinct from the probe to be conducted by an ad hoc joint PNP-PDEA board of inquiry earlier announced by PNP chief Debold Sinas,” Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said in a message to reporters.

“I gave them (NBI) 10 days to submit a report,” he added.

Sinas earlier said that a joint PNP-PDEA Board of Inquiry has been created to determine what transpired and who should be held liable for the incident.

The PNP chief appointed the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) as the lead investigating body, while the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) has been designated “to speak on any updates from the PNP in order to keep the public updated with accurate and relevant information.” – RRD (with details from Correspondent Dante Amento)

Up to NBI to include Mon Tulfo in probe on use of unauthorized COVID-19 vaccine, DOJ says

Robie de Guzman   •   February 25, 2021

Special Envoy to China Ramon Tulfo

MANILA, Philippines – Department of Justice (DOJ) Secretary Menardo Guevarra said he will leave it to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to decide on whether to include special envoy to China Ramon Tulfo in its ongoing probe on the alleged illegal inoculations of COVID-19 vaccines in the country.

Tulfo earlier admitted that he was administered last year with Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine, which is still unregistered in the Philippines.

“I do not dictate upon the NBI as to how it should conduct its investigation. I will leave it to the NBI to determine if it’s necessary or relevant to invite Ramon Tulfo to shed light on the matter,” Guevarra said in a message to reporters on Wednesday, February 24.

Guevarra earlier directed the NBI to conduct a probe into the alleged importation, entry, sale, distribution, and administration of COVID-19 vaccines that are not authorized by or registered with the Food and Drug Administration.

He also ordered the agency “to file appropriate charges against all persons involved and found responsible for any unlawful act” in connection with the matter.

According to the DOJ chief, the NBI has yet to submit a report about its investigation.

“I have no info on whether the NBI has in fact completed its probe; that’s why I’m asking for a progress report,” he said.

Guevarra earlier said that a private person who voluntarily agrees to be inoculated with an unregistered vaccine is answerable only to himself.

But a higher sense of ethical responsibility is demanded of a public officer who is expected not only to follow but also to uphold the law, he added. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Dante Amento)

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