DUMAGUETE CITY, July 17 (PNA) –- Officer-in-charge provincial police director Sr. Supt. Dionardo Carlos on Friday assured there will be no whitewash in the investigation by the Negros Oriental Philippine National Police Provincial Office (NOPPO) in relation to the alleged attempted killing of a suspected drug pusher by purported police personnel.
However, he stressed that the NOPPO will let the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) and its special investigator, Dr. Jess Cañete, “do the talking first” even as the PNP director says he has also already started a parallel and independent investigation on the attempt on the life of Romeo Amoma, Jr.
Amoma, 32, of Barangay Taclobo, Dumaguete City, had sought the assistance of the CHR in seeking justice for what he believes was a plot to kill him allegedly by members of the PNP’s Provincial Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operations Task Group (PAIDSOTG) last December 14, 2014.
In a video footage taken from the CCTV system of a gasoline station in Barangay Taclobo, Amoma is seen on a motorcycle near a gas pump when two men riding tandem on another motorcycle drove up to him.
The backrider got off the motorcycle and as he inched closer to Amoma, the man pulled out what appeared to be a gun and pointed it at the latter.
Amoma managed to escape unharmed from his supposed attackers but in his affidavit executed before the CHR official, he claimed he was abducted later by persons that he identified later as members of the PAIDSOTG.
He also further accused the PAIDSOTG personnel of planting evidence, to include shabu and a caliber .45 handgun, on him so he could be placed under arrest.
Sr. Supt. Carlos said the PNP welcomes the CHR investigation and in fact, will be providing legal assistance to the police personnel identified as respondents to Amoma’s complaint as the supposed incident while they were “in the line of duty”.
However, if proven otherwise, these police personnel will have to be on their own, Carlos said.
Subpoenaed to answer the charges raised by Amoma before the CHR are Sr. Inspector Ryan Jay Orapa, then PAIDSOTG team leader, PO1 Retoni Escala, PO2 Marvin Buenaflor, PO3 Serito Ongy and SPO2 Jonathan Abucayon.
They are given to submit their counter-affidavits in ten days upon receipt of the subpoenas, which they said they received Thursday.
The four are placed under “restrictive custody” of their immediate superior, Chief Insp. Benedict Poblete of the PAIDSOTG, to make allow for easy access during interviews and questioning, said Carlos.
Sr. Supt. Carlos said the NOPPO will be conducting its own investigation to support the filing of administrative and/or criminal charges against them if warranted but in the meantime, they will let the CHR move ahead with its probe.
He expressed hope that the incident, now being circulated around as an “extrajudicial killing” will not be exploited by interested quarters who want the case against Amoma dismissed.
Amoma is facing charges for Sec. 5 of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act (R.A. 9165) in relation to his arrest last December at which at least three “bultos” or large volume of suspected shabu were confiscated from him.
The complaint is still pending before City Assistant Prosecutor Oscar Bokingkito. (PNA)