Ex-PDEA chief yields

Photo | AFP

PALO, Leyte — A former top official of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency in the National Capital Region who was previously named by then President Rodrigo Duterte as allegedly involved in illegal drug activities surrendered to the Police Regional Office in Eastern Visayas Wednesday morning.

PRO-8 regional director P/Brig. Gen. Rommel Francisco Marbil disclosed that the former PDEA-NCR director — identified as Erwin Ogario — voluntarily surrendered to him at the PRO-8 headquarters in Camp Ruperto K. Kangleon.

Ogario is one of PDEA officers identified by Duterte as involved in irregularities such as accepting bribes from arrested drug personalities in order to facilitate their release from detention and the dismissal of cases filed against them.

To recall, the former PDEA director, along with PDEA Intelligence Officer Sherwin Manuel, was ordered dismissed in a decision of the agency’s Internal Affairs Service last 19 July 2017 for allegedly facilitating the release of a drug suspect and misdeclaring evidence inventory including 500 pieces of ecstasy that were seized during an operation.

Marbil said Ogario has a pending warrant of arrest for violation of Section 4 (importation) of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs of 2002 issued by the Regional Trial Court Branch 227 in Quezon City on 3 January 2019.

The crime carries a penalty of imprisonment ranging from 12 to 20 years and a fine ranging from P100,000 to P500,000 for those found guilty.

Marbil said that Ogario told him that he has received death threats and that he fears for his life.

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