Who brought Espinosa to Abu Dhabi?
DUBAI, UAE – Suspected drug lord Roland “Kerwin” Espinosa Jr, wouldn’t have been in Abu Dhabi had it not for someone who sponsored his visit visa – and this, Philippine Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates Constancio R. Vingno, Jr. indicated, is now the focus of an investigation.
In a phone interview, Vingno said that the subject of the ongoing probe is the owner of the flat where the fugitive was arrested. The envoy said Espinosa was nabbed in a flat along Khalifa Bin Zayed First Street. (READ: Kerwin Espinosa nabbed in Abu Dhabi)
“Somebody must have sponsored him, somebody who has a residence visa in the UAE,” he told The Filipino Times.
“Malalaman yan sa imbestigasyon. Yung phone nila, titignan kung sinu-sino ang naka-usap dito sa Abu Dhabi. Lahat ng tinawagan nila, aalamin,” Vingno said. “Somebody must have also rented a house for him. If you are not a legal resident, you cannot rent an apartment,” he added. (We will find that out in the investigation. We will check their phones to see who they've talked with here in Abu Dhabi. We will know everyone they've called.)
Vingno said the arrest “was done very quietly,” adding that he was informed about the operation Sunday morning, October 16, by a team of senior police officials from Manila led by Col. Enrique Magalona, the Philippines’ police attaché in the region based in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
“The information about the impending arrest ended with me and I didn’t tell anybody. Umaga pa lang alam ko na na may nangyayari. Our police operatives gave the UAE police the intelligence. At 10pm Sunday night, they told me he (Espinosa) was already captured,” Vingno said. (I've known since morning that something was happening.)
Vingno said he has formally asked the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs to see Espinosa, who is detained by the Ministry of the Interior.
Vingno said the Philippines has no extradition treaty with the UAE. But in the absence of any violations of UAE laws that Espinosa may have committed during his stay, the ambassador said, “Idi-deport siya sa atin.” (He will be deported.)
“It will now be diplomacy at work. Maski na wala tayong extradition treaty with UAE, the fact that nakipag-cooperate sila in capturing a fugitive from justice is a very good indication that he will be turned over to us,” he said. (Even if we don't have an extradition treaty with UAE, the fact that they cooperated with us in capturing a fugitive is a very good indication that he will be turned over to us.) – Rappler.com
This story was republished with permission from The Filipino Times of the United Arab Emirates