• No go for Aquino sisters’ ‘bet’ for top police post

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    THE Court of Appeals (CA) has junked a petition filed by a high-ranking official of the Philippine National Police (PNP) assailing an order of the Office of the Ombudsman preventively suspending him along with several others in connection with the missing 1,004 high-powered AK47 firearms allegedly sold to the communist New People’s Army.

    In a January 12, 2015 resolution penned by Associate Justice Leoncia Real-Dimagiba but was released to the media just recently, the appellate court outrightly dismissed a petition for certiorari filed by Police Chief Supt. Raul Petrasanta “for being insufficient in form and substance.”

    Petrasanta is reportedly very close to the Aquino sisters and their alleged bet for PNP chief to replace beleaguered resigned PNP chief Alan Purisima.

    Also ordered suspended for six months with Petrasanta were Chief Supt. Regino Catiis, Chief Insp. Ricky Sumalde, Chief Insp. Rodrigo Benedicto Sarmiento, Senior Police Officer 1 Eric Tan, SPO1 Randy de Sesto and several other uniformed and non-uniformed personnel.

    “We find petitioner’s failure to file a Motion for Reconsideration [MR] of the 26 November 2014 order fatal to his petition,” the CA said.

    Associate Justices Andres Reyes Jr. and Ramon Garcia concurred with the verdict.

    “Verily, the [MR] is intended to afford the Ombudsman an opportunity to re-examine his order and to correct whatever if any mistakes or errors he [/it] may have committed, without the intervention of a higher court.”

    The appellate court clarified that the preventive suspension is neither a penalty nor a prejudgment of guilt because it is not imposed as a result of judicial proceedings.

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