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‘Bato’ sacks 24 cops in Espinosa killing

Director General Ronald M. dela Rosa, chief of the Philippine National Police, yesterday ordered the relief of 24 policemen who served the search warrant on Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. that led to his death at the Leyte sub-provincial jail in Baybay City.

Dela Rosa placed 18 personnel of the Eastern Visayas-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group and six members of the Regional Maritime Group under restrictive custody at the PNP headquarters at Camp Crame in Quezon City.

Dela Rosa issued the order after being appraised of the initial results of the investigation on the death of Espinosa.

“Let me assure everyone that there will be no whitewash in the investigation, ferret out the truth, and slap appropriate sanctions or charges to our personnel who have committed violations,” said Dela Rosa.

Members of the CIDG Eastern Visayas who were relieved were Supt. Marvin Wynn Marcos, head of the regional CIDG; Supt. Santi Noel Matira, the deputy; Chief Insp. Leo Laraga, team leader of the group that conducted the operation; Senior Inspectors Eric Constantino, Deogracias Diaz III, and Fritz Blanco; Senior Police Officers 4 Melvin Cayobit and Juanito Duarte; SPO2 Alphinor Serrano Jr.; SPO1 Benjamin Dacallos; Police Officers 3 Norman Abellanosa and Johnny Ibanez; PO2 Neil Patric Centino; and Police Officers 1 Lloyd Ortigueza, Bhernard Orpilla, Kristal Gisma, Jerlan Cabiyaan, and Divine Grace Songalia.

PNP Maritime Group members sacked were Chief Insp. Calixto Canillas Jr.; Lucresito Candilosas, SPO2 Antonio Docil; SPO1 Mark Christian Cadilo, PO2 John Ruel Doculan, and PO2 Jaime Bacsal.

Dela Rosa said the sacked policemen were reassigned to the Personnel Holding and Accounting Unit in Camp Crame to face the ongoing investigation of the Internal Affairs Service and the CIDG.

“The PNP will fully cooperate to any investigating body,” said Dela Rosa. (Aaron B. Recuenco)