PNP contests release of Albay mayor arrested for gun ban violation

March 19, 2010 10:10 pm 

MANILA, March 19 – The Philippine National Police-Aviation Security Group (PNP-AvSeGroup) has filed motion for reconsideration before the Pasay City Prosecutor’s Office in connection with the released of an Albay mayor arrested for violating the gun ban.

Sr. Supt. Napoleon Cuaton, of the PNP-AvSeGroup, has asked the Pasay City Prosecutor's Office to reconsider the inquest resolution issued on March 16 by Assistant City Prosecutor Manuel Ortega and duly approved by City Prosecutor Elmer Mitra, which ordered the release from custody of Malinao, Albay Mayor Avelino Ceriola, after "finding lack of probable cause sufficient to sustain respondent's formal indictment in court."

In the inquest resolution, Ortega said the "subject gun or firearm and ammunition were not actually presented during inquest proceedings and that no affidavit or sworn statement vis-à-vis the gunban exemption request for Commission on Elections (Comelec) certification was also submitted or presented during inquest proceedings."

In a motion for reconsideration, Cuaton said the Inquest Resolution was "surprisingly irregular because investigator PO2 Gobaton personally witnessed that Inquest Prosecutor Ortega received the subject firearm and ammunition, as well as the letter dated March 15, 2010 addressed to Comelec Commissioner Lucenito Tagle, which showed that the AvSeGroup did in fact request from Comelec such certification."

Cuaton said the inquest resolution, which showed there is no probable cause, contradicts the dispositive portion which recommended for the elevation of the complaint for a regular preliminary investigation.

"It clearly exposed the mistake and inexcusable negligence of such finding as contained in the said Inquest Resolution which can only be rectified by reconsidering the same as the substantial rights of herein complainant are violated," Cuaton said.

On Wednesday, criminal and administrative charges were filed before the Ombudsman against Ortega for alleged malfeasance and grave abuse of discretion in connection with the case of Ceriola, who allegedly yielded a .45 caliber pistol while about to board a PAL flight to Legazpi on Monday.

Ceriola presented a Comelec exemption for his gun but it turned out to be fake.

Ombudsman graft investigator lawyer Gilbert Bueno formally subscribed and received the complaint filed by officials of the PNP Aviation Security Group against Ortega. (PNA) RMA/MM


Comments are closed.