Criminal charges were filed against airport officials and employees implicated in the “tanim-bala” [bullet planting]incident involving two senior citizens at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
Charged at the Pasay City Prosecutor’s Office were wheelchair attendant Nino Namba and Airport inspectors Ferdinand Morales and Fatti Dame Go.
The complaint was filed by 75-year-old Salvacion Cortabista, who was accompanied by Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) chief Persida Rueda-Acosta.
Namba, Morales and Go were charged with violation of Section 38, of RA No 10591 or Planting of Evidence, Article 294 of the Revised Penal Code under the crime of Robbery with Intimidation of a Person, and Article 287 of the Penal Code under Unjust Vexation and Damages.
Cortabista narrated that she was supposed to fly to Los Angeles, California on April 19, 2016, along with her 78-year-old husband and niece.
Since she is suffering from severe arthritis, she asked Namba to help them with their bags and push her wheelchair.
To her surprise, a live bullet was detected inside her handbag at the final x-ray screening machine by Morales, a member of Office of the Transportation Security (OTS).
“Morales and another OTS member, Fatti Dame Go, together with Namba, implied to Cortabista and her niece Maria Fe Balagot, that more than P50,000 would ‘settle’ the case,” the complaint read.
The couple refused the shakedown and were subsequently charged despite their protests that they do not know where the bullet came from.
Cortabista pleaded for the dismissal of the case against her for lack of probable cause.
She personally appeared at the Office of Assistant Chief State Prosecutor Theodore Villanueva at the Department of Justice.
Acosta said that there is no evidence against her client and the case must be junked.