Authorities launched an investigation yesterday into 16 cops suspected of attempting to smuggle contraband materials meant for high-profile inmates into Muntinlupa City’s New Bilibid Prisons (NBP).
National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) acting chief Brig. Gen. Debold Sinas refused to disclose the identity of the policemen while investigations were ongoing, but said that the cops are now under house arrest. The NCRPO confiscated tobacco, liquor, and electronic gadgets, according to The Philippine Daily Inquirer.
The accused cops are members of the NCRPO’s Regional Mobile Force Company, which was tasked with demolishing kubols, or makeshift private dwellings, built by prominent prisoners inside the maximum security compound.
Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) Spokesperson Maj. Albert Tapiru told CNN Philippines yesterday that 14 of the 16 cops tried to smuggle cellphones into the maximum security compound, where high-level inmates are detained. Tapiru said that the apprehended cops also tried to sneak in alcohol inside iced tea bottles.
He added that a liter of liquor that sells for PHP500 (US$10) outside prison grounds can be sold for PHP6,000 (US$117) inside the NBP, and that the cops allegedly earned money by sneaking them into the prison.
“[T]hey really have huge kickbacks,” Tapiru said in a mix of English and Filipino.
Meanwhile another BuCor spokesperson, Maj. Wena Dalagan told Manila Bulletin yesterday that the authorities will investigate those involved in the alleged smuggling.
“Once we prove that they sneaked in contraband items to sell inside the NBP, they would be charged with grave misconduct. And based on our administrative machinery, they would be punished with dismissal of service on their first offense,” Dalagan said in a separate interview with radio station DZMM.
Acting chief Sinas has said that he will be replacing NCRPO policemen deployed at NBP every month to avoid possible corruption and bribery by inmates. He also ordered the 16 policemen to file their counter-affidavits.
The removal of illegal structures at the NBP started early this month and has resulted in the seizure of large amounts of contraband, including illegal drugs, bladed weapons, sex toys, money, and even ice cream freezers. Tapiru believes that the explosion that occurred inside the NBP on Oct. 11 was the inmates’ way of retaliating for the seizure of the contraband items.
This article, 16 cops allegedly caught smuggling contraband into Muntinlupa’s New Bilibid Prisons, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company. Want more Coconuts? Sign up for our newsletters!