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PIA Press Release

PNP airs side on crime incidents in East Samar

By Alice Nicart

Borongan City (28 November) -- The series of holds ups and other related crimes in the area of responsibility (AOR) of the Eastern Samar Police Headquarters under the leadership of Senior Superintendent/Police Director Prudencio de la Cruz have raised doubts as to its effectiveness in its delivery of police protection service.

Many have asked "are we still safe with our police around?". No less than de la Cruz's immediate superior "have expressed his disappointment on what he described as slow intelligence networking on the part of Eastern Samar PNP", (LSDE, Nov. 26, 2008)

In a radio interview today, however, de la Cruz aired his view in reaction to the statement of his boss.

"It is not true because we have solved some. For instance, we already have filed the case vs. the suspects in the Baquilod crime in Baybay, Borongan who were allegedly relatives themselves of the victim," de la Cruz reported. "Also the one in Maydolong where a Taytay Lending Company employee was robbed of a good sum, the case was likewise filed vs. the suspects Roy Canales and his group. However, as a professional, I cannot do otherwise, I will leave my post as may be ordered by higher authorities," the PNP director humbly uttered. "But, I would like to let them know, also, we have not been negligent in our police duties", he said.

Asked if he considers it solved when no arrest at all had been done, de la Cruz swiftly replied that no warrant of arrest had been issued by the Court which is why, they cannot execute the arrest because they are not armed with the warrant.

In which case, the Police Director appealed to the public for any information which may lead to the arrest of suspected criminals. He said that the cellular phone is the best information tool so the informant can be protected. He also mentioned the inadequate number of personnel in his AOR. If only the number of quota can be filled up, every time there is a recruit proceeding, then perhaps, the ideal ratio of police to population can be approximated, all provincial offices can be manned with ideal number of PNP personnel.

As to the recent highway robbery hold-up of MIA Bus in Canpidhan, San Julian, (near Putong crossing) which cost the life of an ESSU engineering student from Taft, only because he refused to give his cell phone to the hold upper, de la Cruz reported that they already have a suspect from Western Samar from where the suspect took the bus to Borongan. He added that, an informant told them the man is out of Parole. He said that he already has sent for a picture of the guy and what he is thankful for also is that, most of the MIA passengers when the crime occurred, have expressed likeness to cooperate. Once they get the picture, the passengers will be asked if the same was one of the hold uppers of the bus, de la Cruz promised.

Aside from the young fatality in the hold up, reports said more cell phones had been carted away by the heartless men, including the newly withdrawn bonus and cash gift of a soldier-passenger.

The MIA Bus Company had become the cheaper transport option of Eastern Samarenos going Borongan-Tacloban and back. It takes the northern route to Tacloban passing through Taft-Buray. (PIA-Eastern Samar) [top]

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