Estrada orders Coronel to conduct lifestyle check on MPD personnel
The Daily Tribune| Written by Pat C. Santos| August 10, 2016
As more “narco” officials, judges and policemen were named by President Duterte, Manila Mayor Joseph “Erap” Estrada yesterday directed the chief of the Manila Police District (MPD) to conduct a deeper background investigation and lifestyle check on every officer and member of the city’s police force.
Estrada issued the directive as MPD director Senior Supt. Joel Coronel bared they had identified 10 “ninja cops” or those who resell illicit drugs they had confiscated during police operations that are still in active duty at the MPD.
“This is the time MPD should prove it is really the ‘Manila’s Finest.’ It has to weed out its members who are into drugs,” said Estrada, who had been waging a 24-year war against drugs.
“To do that, it should first check on the lifestyle and personal assets of all the personnel, especially those who have long been suspected of involvement in illicit activities. Identify them and charge them in court and kick them out of the police force,” he added.
Estrada summoned Coronel last Monday after the name of one Chief Insp. Roberto Palisoc, supposedly from the MPD Station 7, appeared on the list of illegal drug protectors released by Duterte last Sunday.
It turned out that Palisoc is no longer with the MPD since 2011, according to Coronel.
“Our records show that Chief Insp. Roberto Palisoc was formerly assigned to MPD Station 7 on Abad Santos, Tondo. But since January 2011, he has been transferred outside MPD and reassigned to NCRPO,” Coronel clarified.
During his stint with the MPD, Palisoc had no record of administrative or criminal cases, Coronel said.
Palisoc retired from the Philippine National Police (PNP) on Feb. 1, 2016.
“I don’t know his present disposition or status as of this moment and we are waiting for confirmation from Camp Crame Records and Personnel Management,” Coronel pointed out.
As to the 10 MPD “ninja cops,” the MPD chief said they are now in the process of taking legal action against them.
Started at MPD during the 90s ‘Ninja cops’ are legitimate police operatives who are assigned to conduct anti-illegal drug operations but conduct illegal activities like reselling of the seized drug contraband. Some sources said this small group of police operatives has amassed fortunes during their heydays that some had retired recently and others are in their final years in the police service.
“We are hoping we’ll be able to take action against them or at the very least have them transferred or reassigned outside MPD,” Coronel said.
“After we have compiled our evidence, we’ll file a case against them,” he added.
Since he was vice president and head of the Presidential Anti-Crime Commission in 1992, Estrada has been waging war against drugs for 24 long years until he was elected mayor of Manila in 2013.
In Manila, Estrada is implementing the local version of Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) program, an interactive, classroom-based substance abuse prevention and education course that seeks to prevent the use of prohibited drugs, membership in gangs and violent behavior among the youth.
Through DARE, and with police officers acting as instructors, Estrada explained students are taught how to avoid drugs at a young age.