Bato admonishes, ‘punishes’ 7 cop suspects in Korean rob-extort case

Jun A. Malig
(UPDATED) Dela Rosa is unable to control himself and repeatedly hurls invectives at the cop-suspects. Still unsatisfied, he punishes them with a difficult push-up type position.

FRONT LEANING POSITION. Dela Rosa orders the 7 policemen-suspects to do several minutes of a difficult punishment position. Photo by Jun A. Malig/Rappler

ANGELES CITY, Pampanga (UPDATED) – Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa made an unplanned visit to the city police headquarters here on Wednesday, February 1, to personally admonish the 7 policemen allegedly involved in the robbery and extortion of 3 Korean tourists last December 30.

But besides a mere reprimand, the national police chief was unable to control himself and repeatedly hurled invectives at the cop-suspects. Still unsatisfied, he punished them with a difficult push-up type position while continuing to reproach them.

Bakit ninyo pinera? Bakit ninyo binugbog?” he asked the 7 policemen lined up in front of him, referring to the Korean victims. (Why did you extort from them? Why did you manhandle them?)

Dela Rosa was referring to the “arrest” of Korean tourists Lee Ki Hun, Min Hoon Park, and Lee Jun Hyung from their friend’s house along Apo Street in Friendship Plaza Subdivision here last December 30 in what the suspects claimed was a police operation against illegal online gambling.

The subdivision is the same posh housing area where Korean businessman Jee Ick Joo was kidnapped by a group of men led by policemen from the now defunct PNP-Anti Illegal Drugs Group and later murdered inside the PNP national headquarters in Camp Crame.

When Dela Rosa got replies from the 7 suspects that they thought that what they were doing was a legitimate operation against online gambling, he became angrier.

Legitimate bang mamera sa operation? Legitimate bang mambugbog? Ilang Koreano na ang ginanon ninyo? Pang-ilan nang Koreano ang biniktima ninyo… Pag may maglabas pang ibang Koreano na mag-complain sa inyo, putang-ina n’yo! Tingnan natin ang galing n’yo,” he told them.

(Is it legitimate to extort during an operation? Is it legitimate to manhandle people? How many Koreans did you treat that way? If another Korean comes out to complain against you, you sons of bitches! Let’s see how good you are.)


Pulis kayo para mag-sindikato? Nag-pulis kayo para mapahiya ang uniform? Putang-ina ninyo! Nag-pulis pa kayo,” the PNP chief continued. (You entered the police force to form syndicates? You became policemen to bring shame to the uniform? Sons of bitches! You had to be policemen.”

He then asked why they victimized the Koreans. Every suspect again told him that they thought it was a legitimate police operation.

“Legitimate? Standard procedure bang manghuli ng Koreano, bugbugin, peperahan? Legitimate ba yon? Ano’ng training ng mga ‘to?…Alam n’yo bang gusto ko kayong pa-firing squad ngayon? Tang-ina n’yo,” he said.

(Is it standard procedure to arrest Koreans, manhandle them and extort money from them? Is that legitimate? What kind of training did these people get? Do you know I’d like to put you before a firing squad? You sons of bitches.)

He then turned to the officials of the Angeles City police, asking them what they did to make their men become such policemen.

“Who is the intel here? (an officer at the back of the suspects raised his hand) Ilang taon ka nang intel dito? Six months? Hindi mo nahuli ang ginawa nitong mga tao n’yo. Ano’ng ginawa mo? Hinayaan mo lang? O baka tumatanggap ka sa perang kinikita nila?” he told the visibly fearful officer.

(Who is the intel here? How many years have you been intel here? Six months? You didn’t catch what your people here have been doing. What did you do? You let it be? Or maybe you were accepting money they were earning?)

Kaya kayong mga opisyal kayo, kaya naging ganito itong mga tao ninyo, dahil kayo pabaya. Anong klaseng opisyal kayo? Ang mga tauhan ninyo ganitong ginagawa. Anong klaseng mga lider kayo? Kaya naging ganito itong mga tao ninyo dahil pinabayaan ninyo. Hindi ninyo sinisita,” he told the city police officials.

(You officials, your people became like this because you were negligent. What kind of officials are you? Your men are doing these things. What kind of leaders are you? Your people became like this because you let them be. You did not call their attention.)

Dela Rosa then ordered the suspects to assume front-leaning position, a push-up like stance where one hand is placed atop the other, while he continued hurling invectives at them.

Tingnan natin ang lakas ninyo ngayon putang-ina kayo. Ang lakas ninyong manghablot ng Koreano. Tingnan natin ang lakas ninyo ngayon. Mga putang-ina kayo. Pulis kayo! Hindi kayo mga criminal. Bakit ganyan ang ginagawa ninyo?

(Let’s see how strong you are, you sons of bitches. You dare arrest Koreans. Let’s see how strong you are now. Sons of bitches. You are policemen! You are not criminals. Why do you do those things?)

Problem for the President

While the suspects were in front-leaning position, Dela Rosa asked a police official about the status of their case.

He was told that kidnapping for ransom and robbery were already filed against the 7 Station 5 policemen.

Dela Rosa again turned to the suspects and said that what they created was a national problem. “Mahiya kayo. Presidente mismo namroblema sa ginawa ninyo. Mabuti sana kung problema lang ng city director ninyo dito. Aabot pa sa taas dahil nga foreigner ang binibiktima ninyo.

(Shame on you. What you did caused a problem for the President. It’s good if this was a problem just for your director. It reached the top because you were victimizing a foreigner.)

When Dela Rosa saw that some of the suspects were getting tired of their physical punishment, he threatened to kick them. “Ang lakas ninyong mang-hablot ng Koreano, front leaning position lang hindi ninyo kaya? Ikaw, gusto mong sipain kita dyan? Gusto mong sipain kita? Napakalakas mong mang-hablot ng Koreano putang-ina ka. Ang tapang ninyo.

(You dare arrest Koreans, and you can’t handle a front-leaning position? You, you want me to kick you there? You want me to kick you? You’re strong enough to arrest a Korean son of a bitch. You’re so brave.)

Dela Rosa again turned to the city police officials and told them that if another policeman is involved in a crime against Koreans, they will be made to perform the same physical punishment.

Hindi ninyo sinu-supervise ang mga tao ninyo. Pinabayaan ninyo. Kayo ang pagga-ganituin ko pag hindi ninyo ma-control ang mga tao ninyo,” he said. (You don’t supervise your people. You let them be. I’ll let you do this if you’re unable to control your people.)

After the 7 suspects were brought inside the police building, he asked the commissioned officers to line up in front of him and he lectured them on what it is to be a law enforcer and how to supervise their men.

Wala kayong ginawa… Nakikita ninyo, may ginagawang masama ang mga tao nnyo, pinabayaan lang ninyo,” he told them.

(You did not do anything. You’ve been seeing the bad your people have been doing and you let them be.)

To the surprise of police officials here, Senior Supt Jose Hidalgo Jr, who just assumed his post as city police officer-in-charge last January 25, was replaced by Senior Supt Patrick Villacorte.

Police sources here said Villacorte was with Dela Rosa when the PNP chief arrived Wednesday morning. By late afternoon, Villacorte was already holding a command conference with the police station commanders and division heads and other units in this city. –