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Home Columns Sen. Aquilino Q. Pimentel, Jr. Senate Probe to Trace Source of Money Carried by Police General
Senate Probe to Trace Source of Money Carried by Police General PDF Print E-mail
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Columns - This Week With Nene Pimentel
Tuesday, 21 October 2008 14:20

       S
enate Minority Leader Aquilino Q. Senator Pimentel, Jr. (PDP-Laban) today said the Senate inquiry into the so-called Moscow incident involving a retired police director should determine the source of the unusually huge amount of money that was found in his possession.

 

          Senator Pimentel said that although former Police Director for Comptrollership Eliseo de la Paz claimed that there was nothing irregular about the 105,000 euros (about P6.9 million) supposedly intended for the expenses of the Philippine National Police delegation to the 77th Interpol general assembly on Oct. 7-10,  there has been a lot of speculation about the source of  the money.

 

          “It’s not clear where the money came from. In fact, there is a suspicion, based on a report that I received, that it may have come from jueteng lords.  So it is important to let truth come out,” he said.

 

E ditor’s Note: The findings of Senator Pimentel just reinforce what Bobby Reyes has written before that the National Philippine Police (PNP) leadership is tainted with corrupt leaders. Please read more in this series,

A Call to Arms? (Part4 of Reinventing the RP Military) 
 

          The minority leader said Mr. De la Paz’s version seems to contradict a statement from Interior and Local Government Secretary Ronaldo Puno that only P2.1 million was intended for the PNP contingent to the Interpol conference.

 

          Senator Pimentel said Mr. De la Paz will be asked during the Senate inquiry about his explanation that the money he was carrying with him was a “contingent fund.”

 

          If so, he sought an explanation why the senior police officer failed did not declare the amount of euro money he was bringing with him which put him in trouble with the customs authorities at the Moscow International Airport while the PNP delegation was about to fly back to Manila.

 

          Senator Pimentel said that whether the money came from the public coffers or from private sources, it appears that an infraction of the law has been committed. If the money came from illicit sources, he said this may constitute a possible breach of the Anti-Money Laundering Act.

 

        Mr. Pimentel said that if this kind of scandal has taken place in another country where anti-graft laws are strictly enforced, this would have prompted the entire leadership of the state agency concerned to resign.

        “But because in the Philippines, public functionaries are known to be thick-faced, nobody resigns unless the guilty parties are pinned down,” the senator from Mindanao said.

 

        Senator Pimentel said he learned about the scandal over the undeclared euro-money while he was in London last week to attend a conference on mining and environment.

 

        By coincidence, he said PNP Director Geary Barias was also in London at that time.  He said Mr. Barias was spotted while dining at a Chinese restaurant by a Filipino expatriate who happened to meet with him (Senator Pimentel). Mr. Barias is the PNP official tasked with investigating the controversy over the undeclared euro money. # # #



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Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 October 2008 00:34
 

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