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DOJ to probe Acierto protectors, source of leaked arrest info

DOJ to probe Acierto protectors, source of leaked arrest info
By Benjamin Pulta
MANILA -- The Department of Justice (DOJ) is looking into the possible liability of persons helping fugitive drug smuggler Eduardo Acierto, including the source of the leaked information on the impending arrest of the dismissed police official.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra confirmed that the Office of Prosecutor General Richard Anthony Fadullon has been tasked to look into the circumstances of the leaked information about the arrest order issued by a Manila court on April 12.

"He has been hiding since the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee chaired by Sen. Gordon investigated the magnetic lifter drug smuggling cases. I suppose that leaked information of his impending arrest made him hide all the more," Guevarra said.

The Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 35 ordered the arrest of Acierto and seven others implicated in the smuggling of shabu shipments inside magnetic lifters last year.

Aside from Acierto, Judge Ma. Bernardita Santos issued the arrest warrants against former Customs Intelligence Officer Jimmy Guban, former Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Deputy Director for Administration Ismael Fajardo, Chan Yee Wah alias KC Chan, Zhou Quan alias Zhang Quan, consignees Vedasto Cabral Baraquel Jr., Maria Lagrimas Catipan, and Emily Luquingan.

Guban was already taken into custody by the National Bureau of Investigation last April 17. The arrest order dated Apr. 12, 2019 set no bail.

Earlier, the investigating panel of prosecutors led by Assistant State Prosecutor Mary Jane Sytat cleared 32 others in the drug smuggling charges for lack for evidence.

The panel also endorsed to the Office of the Ombudsman for preliminary investigation the complaint for violation of Section 3 (e) of Republic Act 3019 (dereliction of duty and grave misconduct) against former Bureau of Customs (BOC) Commissioner and now Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) director general Isidro Lapena, Fajardo, Acierto, Guban, dismissed Port of Manila District Collector Vener Baquiran, and BOC X-ray Inspection Project head Zsae Carrie de Guzman.

Customs Intelligence and Investigation Service (CIIS) officer Gorgonio Necessario, Customs Operating Office IV Dolores Domingo, BOC shift supervision Benjamin Cajucom, BOC X-ray operator and analyst Manuel Martinez, customs employees Joseph Dimayuga and John Mar Morales have also been endorsed for preliminary investigation before the Ombudsman. (PNA)

DOJ to probe Acierto protectors, source of leaked arrest info DOJ to probe Acierto protectors, source of leaked arrest info Reviewed by AsianPolicy.Press on 11:06:00 PM Rating: 5

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