Año to cops on drug list: Prove your innocence
Emmanuel Tupas (The Philippine Star) - February 20, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año yesterday challenged Lt. Col. Jovie Espenido and 355 other police officers included in the narco list of the administration to present pieces of evidence that will show they are innocent.

“They should prove they have no connection to illegal drugs. The burden of proof is with them,” he said in Filipino in a statement.

Espenido denied involvement in the illegal drug trade, accusing corrupt politicians and police officials of being responsible for his inclusion in the drugs list.

Año said Espenido and the other police officers must present their evidence to the four agencies handling illegal drug reports, namely the Philippine National Police (PNP), Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, National Intelligence Coordinating Agency and Intelligence Services of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

The narco list, Año said, is a consolidation of intelligence and other reports from law enforcement agencies that still need to be verified and validated.

Año lauded PNP chief Gen. Archie Francisco Gamboa for his initiative to resolve the issue of police officers reportedly involved in the illegal drug trade.

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