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PNP chief ready to face probe on ‘drug recycling’

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The country’s top cop on Saturday said he is confident about hurdling the Senate investigation into the alleged involvement of police officers in the recycling of seized illegal drugs.

“Well number one is the accusation. The thing in Pampanga was already dismissed way back 2017. And I have been saying many times before, it would be self-serving if I will be the only one who will say something. I think somebody has to explain this, not me, not them, not anybody else. Siguro somebody who is not interested in this case,” Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, Gen. Oscar Albayalde told reporters on the sidelines of the testimonial parade and review in his honor at the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) in Fort Del Pilar, Baguio City.

Albayalde was referring to the incident in 2014 where he was relieved as Pampanga provincial police director after some of his men were found to be involved in illegal drug activities. The case, however, was later dismissed.

He said retired Brig. Gen. Manuel Gaerlan, former Deputy Regional Director for Operations (DRDO) in Central Luzon, is willing to testify as he was the one who led the investigation of the case.

“He volunteered himself because he knows everything. He was the head of the investigation body and he admitted that he was directed by then General Raul Petrasanta to lead the investigation,” he noted.

Albayalde is set to attend a hearing of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee to probe into the irregularities on the implementation of the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) and its connection to the proliferation of illegal drugs on October 1.

This comes after retired Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) chief and now Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong identified the cops and police officials involved in the recycling of illegal drugs in an executive session in the Senate last week.

Earlier, Albayalde also said he discussed rumors of his alleged involvement in illegal drugs during his private meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte.

Albayalde noted that the cops being monitored are either involved in the recycling of illegal drugs or under the payroll of illegal drugs syndicates operating in the country.

He said it is up to the President to decide on the list of ninja cops submitted by the PNP.

“We leave that up to the President. Let’s give him space, we leave that to the wisdom of the President. He said that he will decide in due time,” the PNP chief said.

“The PNP’s internal cleansing will be relentless and will continue on until all rogue cops especially those involved in illegal drugs will be weeded out from the service and charged in court,” he added. (PNA / Christopher Lloyd Caliwan

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