Cebu jail raid: warden owns fighting cocks seized by cops?
CEBU CITY, Philippines – Inmate Jerryfer Perigrino was found in a compound outside the Cebu City Jail and the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC) with drugs, paraphernalia, debit cards and cash.
This was after a raid on the CPDRC Saturday morning before dawn, August 13.
A police report said, "The suspect claims to be the caretaker of fighting cocks inside the compound that allegedly belong to CPDRC warden Romeo Manansala."
When asked to clarify if Manansala was also the owner of the compound, Cebu Provincial Police Office (CPPO) Director Jose Macanas only said that Perigrino told police the fighting cocks he was taking care of belonged to Manansala.
"But the fact is, he is an inmate who was allowed to live outside the prison. And that is not allowed," Macanas said in Filipino.
Manansala is currently under investigation by the provincial government for several violations that happened under his watch, including the deaths of 10 inmates, an inmate who escaped, and a jailed female inmate facing sex trafficking charges found to be in possession of a laptop and cellphone.
According to the initial police report, police found "considerable quantities of shabu, weighing scales, P61,000 in cash, and other drug paraphernalia."
Leading the raid were 350 personnel from the Philippine National Police Regional Office (PRO-7), Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA-7), the Special Action Force (SAF), Bureau of Jail Management and Protection (BJMP-7), and the Philippine Coast Guard.
An additional 80 police officers from the Cebu Provincial Police Office (CPPO) were also deployed to assist in the operation.
Provincial jail raid
According to the same police report, the surprise raid of the provincial jail happened at 2 am.
Cell phones, sachets of melted shabu, P60,000 in cash, among others, were found and confiscated.
Regional Police Director Noli Taliño said that the Philippine National Police (PNP) would assist the provincial police, which administers the prison, in investigating Manansala.
Cebu Governor Hilario Davide III had already taken over the CPDRC on August 11.
Rappler sought Manansala to get his side on allegations if the fighting cocks or the compound belongs to him, but he has not yet replied.
The CPDRC, famous for its dancing inmates, had claimed to be drug-free in the past due to its dance program, which is a part of its drug rehabilitation program.
Alvaro "Barok" Alvaro, a top suspected drug lord in Central Visayas, who surrendered to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in Bohol last July, is an inmate at the CPDRC.
"I've been asking them to clean up the prison for a long time," Davide said in a statement. "The police's seizure of contraband shows how serious we are about cleaning up the antics happening inside the prison," he added.
City jail raid
The Cebu City Jail, formerly known as the Bagong Buhay Rehabilitation Center (BBRC) is just across the street from the CPDRC, was also raided.
According to the PNP's final inventory, the items confiscated included: 70 grams of shabu worth P240,000, about P4.7 million cash, bladed weapons, assorted cell phones, two improvised burners, and a ledger of drug transactions.
These items are now in police custody.
Also found in the raid were a pool table, flat screen TVs, and expensive athletic shoes.
While the CPDRC is administered by the province, the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) manages the Cebu City Jail.
The BJMP will be responsible for investigating its own personnel who allowed inmates to sell drugs from the prison. – Rappler.com