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Police crime lab chief caught in shabu session

A police superintendent was caught in the act of allegedly using shabu with a female companion yesterday, drawing the ire of Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa who confronted him at the Las Piñas police headquarters.

“High ka ba? Adik ka? Sabog ka? Put*** *** mo nahuli ka doon nagsha-shabu ka?” Dela Rosa barked at Supt. Lito Cabamongan, chief of the PNP Crime Laboratory Service-Alabang Satellite Office in Muntinlupa City.

The 50-year-old Cabamongan was arrested at 5:30 a.m. along with Nedy Sabdao, 44, of Barangay Talon 4, Las Piñas inside a shanty near Sabdao’s residence.

Elements of Talon Kuatro Police Community Precinct (PCP-6) swooped down on the shanty following a tip from a concerned citizen.

The operatives were surprised after Cabamongan, who was in civilian clothes, introduced himself as a police official.

Seized from the two suspects were four plastic sachets with suspected shabu, two disposable lighters, three aluminum foil strips, three empty plastic sachets with traces of suspected shabu.

Cabamongan and Sabdao were presented by Southern Police District (SPD) director Chief Superintendent Tomas Apolinario Jr. during a press briefing attended by Dela Rosa and National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) chief Director Oscar Albayalde.

Cabamongan is the highest-ranked police officer arrested so far in the government’s relentless war against drugs.

Following his arrest, Cabamongan claimed he was there as an undercover agent to arrest a colleague whom he said was involved in the illegal drugs trade.

However, the police official could not give a name when asked who the colleague he was referring to.
Albayalde did not buy Cabamongan’s alibi.

“Very unlikely itong claim ng suspek dahil hindi naman siya operatiba ng anti-illegal drugs para mag-conduct ng ganoong operasyon,” Abayalde said.

Cabamongan also denied using “shabu” but admitted to using marijuana.

Before being assigned in Muntinlupa, Cabamongan has handled multiple positions in the PNP including being head of a cooperative in the SPD.

He was also involved in various scandals, the latest was last week when he went to watch a movie for free in a mall. He reportedly did push-ups, “yoga” and tumblings while inside the movie theatre.

As a result of the complaint, Cabamongan was relieved from his position last March 23.

Cabamongan and Sabdao, currently detained at the Las Piñas police headquarters, face charges for possession and use of illegal drugs (Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002).

“I reiterate to all SPD personnel, should there be any PNP member of SPD be proven to have taken part in any criminal activity, you will be sanctioned severely, worst will be dismissed from service,” Apolinario warned.
(MARTIN SADONGDONG)

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