Deputy Ombudsman denies asking Mendoza P150,000 for case review

September 6, 2010 11:33 am 

MANILA, Sept. 6 -– Deputy Ombudsman Emilio Gonzales on Monday denied reports that he had asked hostage taker, Senior Insp. Rolando Mendoza, the sum of P150,000 in exchange for the expeditious review of his case.

Gonzales denied this allegation, adding that no such thing took place.

He also added that it is highly irregular for government employees to ask money in exchange for their service.

Gonzales was one of the persons who Mendoza last talked to during the bloody Aug. 23 Luneta Grandstand hostage stand-off.

Chief Insp. Romeo Salvador, one of the police negotiators, allegedly overheard the suspect berating Gonzales while talking to the latter on his mobile phone.

The cause of the outburst allegedly was the P150,000 demand by the Deputy Ombudsman.

As this developed, the Incident Investigation and Review Committee (IIRC) is set to interview on Monday Manila Police District (MPD) negotiator Supt. Orlando Yebra, bus driver Alberto Lubang and the mysterious woman who drove disgruntled Senior Insp. Mendoza at the Luneta Grandstand during the early hours of Aug. 23.

The IIRC panel would most likely questione Lubang on why he stopped the tourist bus he was driving and allowed the heavily armed Mendoza to board his vehicle.

Aside from this, Lubang would also be asked to shed light on how did he managed to free himself from his handcuffs using an ordinary nail cutter.

It could be recalled that Mendoza, during the early hours of the Luneta Grandstand hostage stand-off, manacled Lubang to the bus’ steering wheel to prevent the latter from escaping.

The IIRC will also query Lubang to demonstrate to the panel how he effected his unshackling.

In the same vein, the bus driver will also be asked to shed light on exactly did Mendoza go on about shooting the Hongkong nationals still trapped in the vehicle.

Yebra will be queried on the remarks made by his Chief Insp. Romeo Salvador, the assistant negotiator, that he could have neutralized the suspect if he was not prevented by the former.

Other possible questions that will be hurled on Yebra includes whether is it possible that the suspect could have given himself peacefully if police authorities did not manhandle his the latter’s brother, SPO2 Gregorio Mendoza.

While the still unnamed woman driver, who used a Vios car, in transporting Mendoza will be grilled by the panel to determine if she was part of the hostage taking or just a friend who gave the former police officer a lift. (PNA)

V3/PFN

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