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PNP goes hard on cheats

Kristina Maralit

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The Philippine National Police (PNP) has filed a case against a widow of a retired police officer who had failed to notify the PNP of her husband’s death yet illegally received her pension.

The complaint was docked by the PNP Retirement and Benefits Service (PRBS) against a certain Lucila de Mesa for continuously withdrawing from her husband’s pension after his death.

In a report by PCol. Arthur Bisnar, PRBS director, De Mesa continued to receive the monthly pension of her husband, PSgt. Fortunato Gomez de Mesa, who retired from the service on 19 September 1989. He died on 18 February 2019.

After nearly three decades as a PNP pensioner, the monthly benefit was supposed to be halted in March 2019 but Lucila did not report her husband’s death to the PRBS.

“From the time the pension should have stopped until May 2020, the suspect had withdrawn P535,355.93 conferring to the certificate issued by the PNP Finance Service,” Bisnar said.

The case was filed last 2 July. Her whereabouts, however, are still being traced by the police.

PNP chief PGen. Archie Gamboa had instructed the PRBS to recover the overpayment claimed by De Mesa and to monitor the case as a significant step of the PNP to uncover similar fraudulent acts to penalize bogus beneficiaries.

Gamboa is likewise pushing for stiffer penalties against fake pensioners and claimants for overpayment as part of the PNP’s continuing national monitoring and accounting of pensioners under his watch.

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