DOJ officials no show at drug buster’s probe

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All five Department of Justice (DOJ) officials who had been invited to an executive session sought by Lt. Col. Ferdinand Marcelino to shed light on the military officer’s alleged links to illegal drugs skipped the meeting scheduled last Monday.

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Chief Insp. Roque Merdeguia, legal officer of the Philippine National Police Anti-Illegal Drugs Group (PNP-AIDG) on Tuesday told reporters in Camp Crame in Quezon City that the five DOJ officials were to reveal their knowledge on the extent of illegal drug operations in the country.

Those who were no shows at the executive session were DOJ Secretary Emamnuel Caparas, National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Director Virgilio Mendez, Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Commission Executive Director General Reginald Villansanta, Prosecutor General Claro Arellano and Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines chief Maj. Gen. Arnold Quiapo.

Another invited official, however, attended the execu- tive session.

Joel Tuvera, a lawyer and the chief of the NBI Anti-Illegal Drug Division, brought along with him a copy of a letter from the bureau to Senior Supt. Manolo Ozeata, AIDG officer-in-charge, who claimed that Marcelino has no information on a drug laboratory in Santa Mesa district in Manila.

Also according to the letter, Marcelino and Yan Yi Shou alias Randy, a Chinese, who both were arrested at the drug laboratory last February, were not action agents of the NBI.

Merdeguia said Marcelino, instead of submitting an affidavit, has asked that officers from the AIDG and PDEA who apprehended them undergo a lie detector test.

The request was turned down, though, by prosecutors who asked the Marcelino camp to submit the affidavit on Wednesday.

Merdeguia said their confidence remains high that the prosecutors will favor a complaint they had filed against Marcelino, a former PDEA Special Enforcement Service.

He added that the DOJ in the coming days might come up with a decision on the complaint of violation of Republic Act 9165 that they have filed against Marcelino and Randy.

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