Police sue Osmeña before Ombudsman
Mayor Tomas Osmeña
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Police sue Osmeña before Ombudsman
Ermida Q. Moradas (The Freeman) - August 31, 2018 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) formally filed before the Office of the Ombudsman-Visayas yesterday a complaint against Mayor Tomas Osmeña for taking custody of three men the police arrested last week for operating a butane canister refilling business.

 

The recommended charges included obstruction of  justice, grave abuse of authority, misconduct, violation of  the ethical standards for government employees.

Also included in the complaint were evidences such as sworn affidavits of Parian police, Cebu City Police Office Director Senior Supt. Royina Garma, blotters of the incident, as well as copy of CCTV footage inside the station.

Based on the report of Parian police, authorities arrested last Friday three men identified as Ramir Amaca, 33, of  Mandaue City; Romeo Appareca, 42; and Romeo Cuevas, 57; both from Cebu City. The three were allegedly involved in refilling butane canisters with liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) at a public market in Barangay T. Padilla.

The operation seized a total of 638 refilled and empty butane canisters.

A separate police blotter revealed that several hours after the arrest, Osmeña arrived at the police station and inquired about the three arrested suspects.

Allegedly, after inquiring the violation of the suspects, he told the suspects to go home.

The duty desk officer allegedly told the mayor to wait for the clearance from their station commander but the latter said he would take custody of the three.

“The mayor even stood up at the main door of the police station while watching the three suspects freely walked away despite already his knowledge about their arrest while the police officers were telling him about the clearance from the station commander,” part of the spot report from Parian police read.

Garma, in an interview with reporters, said police were intimidated by Osmeña’s actions in the station.

“According to them, he raised his voice which is very intimidating, specifically when the police reasoned out that they had to inform their chief of police that the mayor was there and that the mayor wanted the custody of the three suspects,” she said.

Parian police already filed a case against the three suspects for violation of Presidential Decree 1865 or the Illegal Refilling or Selling of LPG Butane Products.

“This is just the message that if we are doing our job, hayaan kami, and anyway trabaho namin iyon. Anyway we are not intervening sa trabaho din ng ibang units. Ang dapat nito is let us just respect each other’s mandate ng kada agency,” Garma said.

She also said they will be furnishing a copy of the complaint to the Department of Energy, Police Regional Office-7, Camp Crame, Department of Internal Local Government and the National Police Commission.

The FREEMAN tried to reach Osmeña for comment but there was no response from his end as of this writing. He has also since decided to stop holding his usual conference with reporters at the City Hall. —/JMD (FREEMAN)

TOMAS OSMEñA
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