13 PDEA officials face raps for alleged extortion

Posted at 11/15/12 9:35 PM

MANILA, Philippines – Thirteen officials and agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) are facing criminal charges in relation to an extortion case involving suspected drug lord Mark Sy Tan.

The charges were filed after a 2-month long investigation conducted by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).

Robbery with violence and intimidation charges were filed against the agents, led by PDEA intelligence and investigation service (IIS) chief Zoilo Lachica Jr.

Also named as respondents were Marvin Mendoza, Jonathan Morales, Intelligence Officer Norman Daez, Gregorio Camua, Virgilio Castillo, Mark Anthony Omones, Laila Abad, Martin Francia, Alvin Morales, Dave James Curioso Rodolfo Caisip Jr., and Antonio Romero Jr.

Three civilians, identified as Reynete Isidro, Ernesto Garcia Jr. and Jonathan Gangcuangco, were also charged.

Tan was arrested last July 18 and was allegedly asked to pay P50 million—later brought down to P8 million—for his release.

Apart from the 13 officials and 3 civilians, the NBI also charged former PDEA director general Jose Gutierrez for obstruction of justice and negligence.

The NBI filed another complaint against Gutierrez and his predecessor, retired Gen. Dionisio Santiago, in connection to an alleged illegal sale of controlled precursors and essential chemicals.

Also charged in the complaint were Ma. Jesus Mendoza of PDEA’s finance service a certain Edgardo Alpay of Green Planet Management Inc. (GPMI).