North Cotabato governor orders airtight case vs extortionists

John Unson (Philstar.com) - December 9, 2015 - 7:05pm

NORTH COTABATO, Philippines - Gov. Emmylou Taliño-Mendoza on Thursday ordered the provincial police to build airtight cases against two extortionists arrested in North Cotabato’s Midsayap town Wednesday while in the act of mulcting protection money from two local businesswomen.

Mendoza, citing a report from provincial police director Senior Superintendent Alex Tagum, said suspects Omar Soledad and PO1 Howell Dequita have, in fact, been transferred to a detention facility in Kidapawan City to forestall any attempt by relatives to spring them away from detention in Midsayap.

“They will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of law,” Mendoza said on Thursday morning.

Soledad and Dequita, both residents of Barangay Rebuken in Sultan Kudarat town in Maguindanao, were nabbed in an entrapment initiated by the Midsayap police after siblings Rosena and Renah Sinco reported they threatened to sabotage their businesses if they refuse to shell out “protection money” on a regular basis.

READ: Cop, bus inspector nabbed for extortion in North Cotabato

The suspects yielded a .45 caliber pistol, a fragmentation grenade and bladed weapons when policemen, disguised as bystanders, frisked and cuffed them after receiving marked money from their supposed victims.

Dequita belong to the Philippine National Police’s Maritime Unit in Gen. Santos City.

Mendoza said Tagum will personally initiate the filing of administrative charges against Dequita for him to be dishonorably discharged from the PNP.

Tagum had said, in an initial statement Thursday, they will file separate cases of extortion and illegal possession of deadly weapons against the suspects in a local court.

“We are encouraging other people these suspects may have possibly victimized to come out and file charges against them too,” Tagum said.

Mendoza lauded the two Midsayap-based entrepreneurs for helping the police set up the payoff that led to the arrest of Soledad and Dequita.

“This is a classic example of how the police and North Cotabato residents can cooperate to address domestic peace and security issues. We are succeeding in our effort to generate vigilance among our constituents,” Mendoza said. 

ACIRC BARANGAY REBUKEN DEQUITA EMMYLOU TALI HOWELL DEQUITA KIDAPAWAN CITY MENDOZA MIDSAYAP NORTH COTABATO SOLEDAD AND DEQUITA TAGUM
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