PNP says POGO hubs near police, military camps pose no threat to nat’l security

Robie de Guzman   •   August 23, 2019   •   336

MANILA, Philippines – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police General Oscar Albayalde on Friday said that Chinese-dominated Philippine Offshore Gaming Operators (POGO) hubs near police and military installations so far do not pose threat to the country’s security.

Albayalde told reporters in an interview at Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City that foreign businesses usually consider setting up office near a police or military camp for security purposes.

“Ang pinaka-common action ng mga ‘yan ay to find a place nearest to a police station o nearest to a police camp for security reason sa kanila din,” he said.

Albayalde made the remark following concerns raised by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana over the growing presence of Chinese-staffed online gaming hubs and the risks its proximity poses to military and police installations.

Some POGO hubs are located near the headquarters of the Philippine Army in Taguig, the Philippine Air force in Pasay and the Philippine Navy in Manila. Other online gaming hubs are located near the headquarters of the PNP and Armed Forces of the Philippines in Quezon City.

“Kung ikaw ay negosyante, kung ikaw ay merong pwesto or facility na malapit doon sa police station o sa kampo you are already safe,” he said.

Malacañang earlier said it sees nothing wrong with the location of POGO hubs if this means foreign workers’ rights will be better protected.

“Military camps? Eh di lalong magaling kung military camps dahil binabantayan sila ng military for their protection,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said.

However, the PNP chief earlier pointed out that too many POGO hubs near police and military offices might be detrimental to the national security. (RRD with details from correspondent Lea Ylagan)

PNP prepares to launch manhunt ops for GCTA-freed convicts still at large

Robie de Guzman   •   September 13, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Friday said it has formed tracker teams in preparation for the manhunt operations against beneficiaries of the good conduct time allowance (GCTA) law who will fail to comply with President Rodrigo Duterte’s 15-day deadline.

The PNP said the 121 tracker teams formed by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) will be deployed at the end of the 15-day period, which will be on Sept. 19.

There are only six days left before the deadline lapses.

“Nag-organize na agad tayo ng mga teams ng CIDG sa bawat regional offices sa mga provincials at cities,” PNP-CIDG deputy director for administration Police Brigadier General Bernabe Balba told UNTV News in a phone interview.

The president on Sept. 4 ordered convicts who were freed early for good behavior to present themselves within the said period to the nearest police station or to the military.

This is for the investigation and recomputation of their good conduct credits whether they are eligible to avail of the law.

Duterte warned they will be treated as fugitives if they fail to surrender within the given period.

The Department of the Interior and Local Government earlier said it is eyeing to get the help of the International Police (INTERPOL) in arresting heinous crimes convicts freed due to GCTA. This is after they received information that some of the 1,914 released convicts have already left the country.

READ: DILG eyes Interpol, ASEAN police aid in catching GCTA-freed convicts abroad

Balba said that as early as now, tracker teams have started perusing the list of freed heinous criminals who are still at large, as well as their personal information in order to locate their possible whereabouts.

“Even before the deadline ay tumutulong na tayo na malocate at meron din namang namang nagsu-surrender in fact as of today ay nakapagtala na tayo ng 47 surrenderers sa CIDG,” he said.

Data from the PNP showed that as of 6 a.m. Friday, around 353 heinous crimes convicts freed due to GCTA have surrendered to authorities.

Of this number, 115 were convicted for murder while 108 were involved in rape cases.

Mimaropa (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon and Palawan) Regional Police Office has the highest number of surrenderers with 51 followed by Cagayan Valley (Police Regional Office 2) with 35.

The PNP said 234 of the total number of surrendered convicts have been turned over to the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor). RRD (with details from Correspondent Lea Ylagan)

PNP to look into illegal drugs as possible motive for attack on ex-governor Espino

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 13, 2019

The Philippine National Police (PNP) will look into illegal drugs as possible motive for the ambush on former Pangasinan governor Amado Espino Jr.

The PNP said they are looking into all possible motives for the attack which include Espino’s campaign against illegal drugs during his term.

“Ang lahat ng ito ay tinitingnan ng mga posibleng anggulo. Wala pa naman talagang matukoy kung ano talagang dahilan (We are looking at all possible angles. We still haven’t figure out the real motive),” according to PNP Spokesperson Bernard Banac.

“Maaaring may mga sindikato na maaaring naapektuhan ng kanyang kampanya na iyan (There may be crime syndicates that were affected by his campaign),” Banac added.

READ: Former Pangasinan governor Amado Espino hurt in ambush

Espino is already in a stable condition after sustaining bullet wounds on his arm and body.

One of his three wounded bodyguards, on the other hand, remains in critical condition.—AAC (with reports from April Cenedoza)

PNP appoints 6 senior officers to new posts

Robie de Guzman   •   September 12, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police General Oscar Albayalde has designated six senior police officials to new posts in another round of reorganization in the PNP leadership, police spokesperson BGen. Bernard Banac said Thursday.

In a press statement, Banac said Albayalde approved the new designations upon the recommendation of the PNP Senior Officers Placement and Promotion Board.

The reorganization, triggered by the recent retirement of some PNP officers, will affect some key positions in the National Support Units and Police Regional Office, the police official said.

According to Banac, Brigadier General Joselito Esquivel Jr. is now the director of Police Regional Office 13; Brigadier General Gilberto Cruz will be the acting Director for Integrated Police Operations in Northern Luzon; and Brigadier General Alfred Corpus is the new director of Police Regional Office 12.

Meanwhile, Brigadier General Omega Jireh Fidel was appointed director of the Engineering Service; Brigadier General Rey Lyndon Lawas was designated as director of the Training Service; and Colonel Ronnie Montejo was named acting director of Quezon City Police District.

Banac said the new designations take effect Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019.

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