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Man nabbed for VECO extortion

- Ryan Christopher J. Sorote (The Philippine Star) - June 27, 2012 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) 7 arrested a man for allegedly trying to extort P200,000 from the Visayan Electric Company (VECO).

Suspect Rolando Lejardo, 51, of Barangay San Roque in Cebu City was arrested in an entrapment operation at around 3 p.m. Monday at VECO's office in a mall at the North Reclamation Area.

Senior Supt. Jose Pante, CIDG - 7 chief, said VECO sought their help after Lejardo reportedly tried to extort money from the company in four separate occasions since December last year.

Pante said Lejardo threatened VECO that if the company does not give in to his demands, the armed component of his group will go after them.

After two weeks of surveillance, Lejardo was arrested after he allegedly received P180,000 marked money from a police decoy.

In an interview, Lejardo insisted that his transaction with VECO was legal and done in good faith.

He said every transaction was covered by a memorandum of understanding and receipts.

Several documents were recovered from Lejardo including a letter about the conflct between the Philippines and the People's Republic of China over Panatag (Scarborough) Shoal with his signature on it.

Lejardo also identified himself as the "Governor of the State of Cebu" in some of his documents and he also represents a company named "Cebu Federal Inc."

But police believe the company is fictitious. — (FREEMAN)

BARANGAY SAN ROQUE CEBU CITY CEBU FEDERAL INC CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION AND DETECTION GROUP GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF CEBU JOSE PANTE LEJARDO NORTH RECLAMATION AREA PHILIPPINES AND THE PEOPLE REPUBLIC OF CHINA SENIOR SUPT
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