Ronald Joseph Alvarado talks to The STAR at the Manila city hall yesterday. At right is a photo of the man who reportedly defecated in Intramuros.
Hunt on for man who defecated in Intramuros
Rey Galupo (The Philippine Star) - January 28, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The hunt for an Asian-looking man who defecated at Baluarte de Dilao part of the historic walls of Intramuros continued after an expert validated yesterday that the photograph of the public offender that went viral on social media was genuine.

The picture of the elderly man sitting on a large flowerpot and defecating was posted by Facebook user Dos Alvarados and reposted on the Historia Manila Facebook page on Sunday.

Alvarado, Ronald Joseph Alvarado III in real life, is taking up BS Education at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines in Taguig. 

Alvarado said he was visiting Intramuros with his classmates for their educational tour when he saw the man defecating and cleaning up himself with his bare hands.

Alvarado said he took the picture and posted it on Facebook at past 11 a.m.

After an hour, the post went viral with over 9,000 likes and shared more than 2,300 times.

Netizens called on Mayor Isko Moreno to order a hunt to “teach the man a lesson for desecrating” Intramuros, which was declared a National Cultural Treasure in 2018.

Disgusted over the incident, Moreno ordered Manila Police District-Special Mayor’s Reaction Team chief Maj. Rosalino Ibay Jr. to locate the public offender. 

Ibay said charges of violating the Revised Penal Code, grave scandal and alarm would be filed against the man.

Edward dela Cuesta, a photography expert, said the picture was not tampered with.

‘Be responsible tourists’

The Intramuros Administration (IA), an attached agency of the Department of Tourism (DOT), reminded visitors in Manila’s walled city to be responsible amid reports of a foreigner defecating in the area.

“We ask the public to be mindful of our environment and to practice responsible tourism, especially when visiting the country’s heritage sites,” the IA said in a statement.

“We urge the people to be vigilant and call the attention of law enforcement officers or security guards in the areas,” it added.

The agency said IA personnel found no human waste in the area.

But Alvarado stood by his story, saying he saw a black plastic protruding from the flowerpot while the foreigner was defecating. 

The DOT recently rolled out its Save Our Spots movement, which aims to boost local tourism.

“This movement calls for each individual to do their part in acting as a responsible tourist and encouraging the same behavior toward their peers,” Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said.            

Citizen’s arrest

The public can conduct a citizen’s arrest of foreigners who blatantly violate the country’s laws, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said yesterday.

PNP spokesman Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac said people can arrest on sight foreign tourists who are committing an offense.

Citizens can bring the violators to the nearest barangay hall or police station for investigation, Banac said.

Photographs of four Chinese-looking men urinating along Ayala Avenue in Makati also made the rounds on Facebook.

Under Rule 113 of the Revised Rules on Criminal Procedure, a peace officer or a private individual may accost a person who is committing a crime even without an arrest warrant.

If there are two or more violators, Banac said citizens could seek help from police and other persons in authority if their safety is at risk. – With Catherine Talavera, Ghio Ong, Emmanuel Tupas

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