Manila, Philippines - Three chiefs of police (COPs) of Negros Oriental have been relieved for failing to stop illegal gambling, including swertres.
Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo said the three are Chief Inspector Dominicias Distrito of Tanjay City, Inspector Romulos Delfin of Dauin town and Inspector Deogracias Lorico of Valencia town.
“Those other COPs who will defy our standing one-strike policy against illegal gambling shall suffer the same fate. I am giving stern warning to other COPs and PNP provincial directors that I won’t hesitate to order their relief if they would fail in our anti-gambling campaign,” Robredo said.
In his report to Robredo, Senior Superintendent Edward Carranza, Negros Oriental PNP provincial director, said the three were removed from their posts based on the PNP’s one-strike policy and failure to stop illegal gambling operations in their areas of responsibility.
Carranza said swertres is an illegal numbers game whose winning combination is derived from the thrice a day draw of the three-digit lottery games being run by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO).
“Nowadays, swertres operators place their bets via text messaging and no money is involved in the betting process,” he said.
Carranza added that swertres can be played using a cellular phone and by monitoring the PCSO draw results from the radio.
“The bettors would just type their numbers and amount of bets and text them to the bet collectors. Since they both know each other, the payments for the winning or losing bets are done later. So, it’s really hard to catch them. But we won’t stop pursuing them,” he said.
Robredo earlier ordered the relief of two Camarines Sur COPs for failure to stop the proliferation of jueteng in their respective areas of jurisdiction.
The two officers were Chief Inspector Ely Compuesto Jr., chief of police of the town of Pili; and Senior Inspector Victor Azuela, OIC chief of police of Bato town.