Friday, September 28, 2012

Bribery among drug agents?

If we read in the newspapers why some drug-related cases are dismissed, blame them on the lapses of law enforcers who made the arrests and filed the necessary crimnal cases against the suspects.
Seized illegal drugs
Often times, we ask ourselves why? What really happened? The peddling of illegal drugs in the markets is a crime that needs to be stopped before it could inflict serious damages to many young people. But have our law enforcers succeeded in eradicating this society's malady? The answer is a big "No." Why?

Actually, there are a lot of reasons. In apprehending criminals involved in the peddling and distribution of drugs, there are established laws and legal procedures to follow. Our law enforcers may be able to succeed in arresting drug peddlers on the streets, but there are technicalities that need to be observed from the apprehension up to the filing of criminal cases against the suspects in the proper courts.

Ex-PDEA Chief D. Santiago
And the problem comes in when the arresting law enforcers have committed some blunders by not following the proper procedures needed to book the suspects. Hence, some criminal cases filed against the drug suspects are dismissed for the simple reason that the arresting officers sometimes do not show up at the court hearings. Or there are presumptions that bribes got into the hands of some law enforcers who showed lack of interest in the drug case against the drug peddlers.
A manifestation to this was the latest shenanigans at the PDEA when some of its agents were allegedly linked to the P8 million bribe that was mysteriously deposited in the bank account number of a woman, upon the request of a lady friend. This bank account was allegedly used by a certain drug suspect to deposit the money, which was later withdrawn by the PDEA agents. The bank account holder  is now under the protective custody of the Department of interior and Local Government.

Former PDEA chief Director General Dionisio R. Santiago revealed in his report that most causes of acquittal stemmed from some irregularities and illegal rrest, search, and seizure, which account to 29 percent of the total acquitted cases.

"Of these 29 percent, none were caused by new PDEA agents of those few which are military-led," Santiago said. Instead, he claimed that these were mostly caused by police enforcers, and those policemen detailed with PDEA then.

While most of the causes of dismissal of drug cases is due to non-appearance of prosecution witnesses. "This constitutes 50 percent. Of this 50 percent, 98 percent were non-appearance of law enforcement witnesses of local and detailed police enforcers and not by the new drug enforcement agents of PDEA and those that were military-led," the former PDEA chief said.

Santiago added: " The 2 percent that was dismissed due to non-appearance of prosecution witnesses was caused by five new agents who were charged by PDEA itself for extortion along with their detailed police team leaders."

If the current PDEA leadership is now embroiled in some kind of shenanigans, the color of money has something to do with them. With these negative feedbacks from the public, it is only incumbent upon the present leadership to put all PDEA operatives under proper values formation. When drug agents are in cahoots with drug hawkers and peddlers, there's no other alternative but to purge PDEA's roster of undesirables.

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