Witnesses against ‘narco’ generals to get gov’t protection

LUCENA CITY, Quezon – The Department of Justice (DoJ) has two witnesses that will testify against five police generals named by President Duterte as protectors of the illegal drug trade.

Speaking during a DoJ forum at the Queen Margaret Hotel here, Aguirre confirmed that the witnesses were responsible in collecting money from two drug lords inside the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) for the police generals.

The witnesses, according to Aguirre, asked to be placed under the government’s witness protection program (WPP).

“Hindi muna sila lalabas dahil nanganganib ang kanilang buhay,” Aguirre said.

Aguirre said the witnesses said they fear for their lives, quoting them as saying that they would not last three minutes if they end up in a dangerous place.

Last July 5, Duterte tagged five active and retired police generals linked to illegal drug. They are Joel Pagdilao, Bernardo Diaz and Edgardo Tinio who have been relieved from their posts. Also named were retired generals Marcelo Garbo and Vicente Loot who is now a municipal mayor in Cebu.

Pagdilao was formerly chief of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) while Diaz was used to be the director of Region 11. Tinio was former director of the Quezon City Police District.

Aguirre also announced that jail guards of the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) will be replaced by members of Special Action Force (SAF).

The SAF members will be assigned at Building 14 where 53 high-profile drug lords are detained and 75 percent of drug transactions in the country is allegedly made, according to Aguirre.

Aguirre said three correctional guards have confessed their participation in the illegal activities in the NBP and accused the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) as the most corrupt government agency. (DANNY ESTACIO)

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Written by Tempo Online

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