Albayalde implements Ombudsman order vs. cops in anomalous AK-47 deal

MANILASanctions ordered by the Office of the Ombudsman against senior police officials and civilian personnel who approved the release of 1,004 AK-47 assault rifles to private mining and security firms took effect Tuesday.

This was confirmed by Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Director General Oscar Albayalde in an interview with reporters.

The rifles, which were released with undue haste by the PNP in 2011 to private firms despite incomplete or falsified applications and supporting documents, were later found to have been resold to communist rebels over a two-year period from 2011 to 2013.

Speaking to newsmen, Albayalde confirmed that his office handed down the implementing orders following the decision of the Ombudsman on the case for grave misconduct, serious dishonesty and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service.

"May (There is an) order ang (from the) Ombudsman dismissing them, so we have to implement yung utos (the order). Tayo naman ay nagi-implement lang ng utos (We are just implementing the order.) We issued the order of dismissal effective today (Tuesday). Lahat ng tao na na-involved ay dismissed na (All those who were involved are already dismissed)," Albayalde said.

The orders covered active and retired officials and civilian personnel, the PNP chief said.

"Dun sa retired na penalty, pinapa-retrieve na one year salary from the accrued leave nila, yung active ay automatic dismissed na (For those who are now retired, they still have a penalty which is equivalent to one year salary which will be sourced from their accrued leave. Those in active service are now dismissed)," he added.

"Wala silang makukuhang (They will not get) retirement benefits," he added.

Among those sanctioned by the Ombudsman was retired Chief Supt. Raul Delfin Petrasanta, who previously headed the PNP Firearms and Explosives Office.

Petrasanta opted for early retirement in June 2017 after he was ordered dismissed by the Ombudsman for his involvement in the PHP100-million government contract for the delivery of gun licenses.

Another retired official, Chief Supt. Allan ParreAo, who left following his compulsory retirement on Dec. 9, 2015, was fined an amount equivalent to his salary for one year, along with accessory penalties.

Likewise dismissed was SPO1 Eric Tan. Due to his dismissal from service on Feb. 8, 2018, a fine equivalent to the respondent's salary for one year was imposed.

Non-uniformed personnel Nora Pirote, who opted for retirement on Dec. 31, 2014, was also fined equivalent to her salary for one year.

The fines, payable to the Office of the Ombudsman, may be deducted from accrued leave credits or any receivable from his office that is not forfeited, or she may opt to directly pay the fine.

The penalty carries with it the forfeiture of retirement benefits, cancellation of eligibility, and perpetual disqualification from holding office.

Earlier reports said among those who were dismissed were Chief Supt. Regino Catiis of the PNP Directorate for Human Resource and Doctrine Development; Supt. Nelson Bautista of the Personnel Holding and Accounting Unit; Supt. Ricky Sumalde of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group; Chief Insp. Ricardo Zapata Jr. of Police Regional Office 3 (Central Luzon); and Senior Supt. Eduardo Acierto. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency