PNP-CIDG would put the proponents of tanim-bala to shame - Karapatan

"Living up to their infamous reputation of being fascist scriptwriters, the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) has once again proven the repressive, deceitful and detestable anatomy of our police force. Their overused modus operandi of illegally arresting persons without warrant, falsely claiming in flagrante delicto, and then curing said arrest by planting evidence is a tale as old as time,” said Karapatan secretary general Cristina Palabay, referring to the recent arrest of NDFP peace consultant Rafael Baylosis and his companion Roque Guillermo Jr. on January 31, 2018. She asserted that evidence against the two were planted. No warrant was presented to Baylosis and Guillermo at the time of their arrest.

The PNP report stated they apprehended Baylosis and Guillermo because they had guns holstered on their waists while walking alongside Katipunan. Later, the CIDG added that Baylosis also had a grenade, allegedly found in a sack of brown rice. PNP-CIDG NCR Chief Senior Supt. Wilson Asueta said the grenade have been “inadvertently omitted” in the initial PNP report.

“This is routine for the CIDG. It is despicable and ironic how law enforcement agencies are at the forefront of circumventing the law to justify illegal arrests and put to jail dissenters, activists, and innocent civilians. Not only are the CIDG and state forces in general experts at fabricating the truth, they are also adept in planting evidence in people’s belongings. Outperforming the proponents of the tanim-bala modus operandi, the CIDG has perfected the art of tanim-baril and tanim-bomba, complete with a fictional tale to complete their false claims,” said Palabay.

Palabay also recalled several instances where the CIDG had performed their “magic of making evidence appear”. On February 12, 2017, Bayan campaign officer Ferdinand Castillo was illegally arrested, with trumped-up cases of illegal possession of firearms and explosives file against him after elements of the CIDG planted a .45 caliber pistol in Castillo’s possession.

Also on March 22, 2014, according to Karapatan’s secretary general, Northern Police District Chief Supt. Roberto Fajardo, who was sacked for his role in the killing of 17-year-old Kian Delos Santos in a police operation, was “already trained in fabricating testimonies and planting evidence when he served as the PNP-CIDG-NCR director. He was involved in the illegal arrest and detention of peace consultants Benito and Wilma Tiamzon. The five other individuals who were arrested along with the Tiamzons attested that neither guns nor explosives were listed in the inventory they signed, yet to justify the cases against them, puppies and cats which were also taken by the police were recorded as firearms on paper.”

Karapatan’s secretary general stated that such maneuvers of the police have been widely used to jail activists and leaders of progressive organization, and increasingly, to justify extrajudicial killings in line with the war on drugs, adding the planting of drug paraphernalia into the PNP’s growing list of expertise.

“The CIDG has mastered the art of planting evidence to justify illegal arrests, but their creative writing skills (or lack thereof) reveal the loopholes in their poorly-woven stories. The PNP-CIDG and the roster of state security forces have never been credible institutions to start with, and here they are again, proving to the Filipino people that the distrust and disgust directed against the state’s repressive minions are very much justified,” concluded Palabay.