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Atienza: Ninja cops the best argument vs. death penalty

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By JOHN CARLO M. CAHINHINAN

Party-list Cong. Lito Atienza (Buhay) said the criminal activities of “ninja cops” serve as one of the strongest arguments against the return of the death penalty.

Atienza warned that every citizen “is vulnerable to potential drug evidence-planting and extortion by these police scalawags” who are illegally hoarding seized drugs, and whose apparent sole motivation is to use their positions of authority to make money for themselves.

Atienza stressed that ninja cops are “bound to use the hazard of death sentences to threaten their victims of extortion, if and when Congress brings back capital punishment.”

Resigned Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde recently has been embroiled in a drug scandal involving 13 of his men when he was Pampanga provincial police head almost six years ago.

Officers led by then Maj. Rodney Baloyo IV, one of Albayalde’s deputies in Pampanga, allegedly kept for themselves cash, vehicles and some 160 kilos of shabu with a street value of over P650 million, following an operation against suspected Chinese drug trafficker Johnson Lee in Mexico town on Nov. 29, 2013.

In exchange for a P50 million payoff, Baloyo’s team also allegedly set Lee free, and instead presented another Chinese, Ding Wengkun, who was later acquitted of the charges.

Atienza said ninja cops should be put on trial “for brazenly defying the legal provisions that are there precisely to thwart the rampant recycling of confiscated drugs back into our streets, which has become a lucrative racket for crooks in the force.”

“These rotten officers have been operating above the law and have made a mockery of the Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, which mandates strict guidelines in the proper accounting, custody and disposition of impounded drugs,” said Atienza.

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