BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya: Two police colonels and 12 others are facing robbery, unlawful arrest and arbitrary detention charges for raiding “state-sanctioned” online gaming stations here and in Cagayan and Isabela.
Charged at the Office of the Ombudsman were Senior Su–perintendents Ronnie Tapat and Remus Medina of the Cagayan Valley regional police office in Tuguegarao City.
Also included were Chief Insp. Julius Ordonio, Tugue–garo police chief; Senior Insp. Ronar Pacis, police chief of Baggao, Cagayan; Senior Insp. Alberto Mahor, SPO3 Cezar Malana, SPO1 Manny Viloria, PO3 Gary Bulauitan, PO1s Jonas Paet, Danilo Narag, Romerlito Pulido, Jimmy Javier and Mark Udaundo.
The complainants, Rogelio Carlos, Rosemarie Bassig, Joseph Cariaga, Jonathan Felipe, Virgilio Lagoc and Edie Tagura, employees of Meridien Vista Gaming Corp. (MGVC), accused the police–men of arresting and detaining them and confiscating their equipment without justifiable grounds when they raided their online betting stations in Tuguegarao City and Bag gao town.
They said the raids took place despite their presentation of documents, including mayor and business permits. Meridien has a permit from the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) to conduct gaming operations such as horse racing, dog racing, gambling, casinos and golf course.
But Cagayan Valley police director Chief Supt. Miguel Laurel described the charges as “simple harassment.”