Lt. Col Villaflor Banawagan, who heads the AKG’s Luzon field unit, said they need more personnel as the number of kidnappings has increased due to the influx of POGO firms in the country.
STAR/File
PNP needs more agents vs POGO-related kidnappings
Emmanuel Tupas (The Philippine Star) - December 13, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The police Anti-Kidnapping Group (AKG) wants to recruit more agents to beef up manpower against the rising number of kidnappings involving personnel of the Chinese-run Philippine offshore gaming operators (POGOs).

Lt. Col Villaflor Banawagan, who heads the AKG’s Luzon field unit, said they need more personnel as the number of kidnappings has increased due to the influx of POGO firms in the country.

“We need it and we can request for it,” he said at a press briefing at Camp Crame, in Quezon City yesterday.

There are 321 police officers and personnel assigned at the AKG’s main office at Camp Crame and field offices nationwide.

Its manpower is short by 162 for the ideal strength of 483 officers and personnel to be assigned in various parts of the country.

The AKG documented 36 casino-related kidnappings from January to November 2019, higher by 125 percent than the 16 cases in 2018.

A total of 69 cases were recorded since 2017.

The AKG has also recorded six POGO-related kidnappings since January this year, where employers kidnapped their workers who wanted to go back to China after they felt shortchanged.

Banawagan said the entry of additional personnel would allow them to better respond to these kidnapping.

 

AKG ANTI-KIDNAPPING GROUP KIDNAPPING PHILIPPINE OFFSHORE GAMING OPERATORS POGOS
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