Resorts World security chief admits to using fake name
MANILA, Philippines – The security chief of Resorts World Manila admitted he has been using a fake name as the House continued its probe into a lone gunman's attack on the posh hotel-casino on Wednesday, June 21.
House games and amusements committee chairperson Gustavo Tambunting asked Armeen Gomez if reports were true that this was not his real name.
Gomez confirmed the reports, saying his name was Armenio B. Gomez but he is now "carrying" the name Armeen.
Gomez, however, was vague in explaining why he changed names.
"I was orphaned at 9 and I've been a survivor from then on. And in my younger years, perhaps in my youth, I may have committed lapses in judgment. But I moved forward and I studied, I studied further," said Gomez.
Tambunting then asked if Gomez has a brother named Armeen Alain, who is now working in Naga City.
Gomez said yes, then invoked his right against self-incrimination.
"There have been some questions, but I would like to answer that in a separate forum, in a proper time…. [Upon] the advice of my legal counsel, may I respectfully invoke my right against self-incrimination," said Gomez.
The Resorts World Manila security chief was previously grilled by lawmakers for not completing his college degree. By his own admission, Gomez entered the Philippine Military Academy but was kicked out for "personal reasons."
According to Reuters, Gomez "has over 10 years of management and leadership experience in asset protection, fraud control, safety administration, investigation and related functions."
Gomez told lawmakers on Wednesday that he still stands by his overall performance as Resorts World Manila security chief in the last 6 years, even if it was under his watch that lone gunman Jessie Carlos attacked the hotel-casino.
A total of 37 people died in the attack, aside from Carlos who committed suicide, according to police. (READ: Valuables stolen from Resorts World victims during attack, says lawmaker)
Resorts World investigating
Tambunting then asked Resorts World Manila chief operating officer Stephen Reilly if they would have hired Gomez had they known about his fake name.
"If the circumstances would have been known from the very start, of course, there would have been a different hiring process," said Reilly.
But he also defended Gomez, saying, "Mr Gomez, I can state, has proven himself to be very credible in his capacity while he was working for Resorts World."
Resorts World Manila chief legal officer Georgina Alvarez, however, told lawmakers they have only realized recently that "there may have been misrepresentations on the personal circumstances of Mr Gomez."
Alvarez said Gomez is entitled to due process and they have already asked him to give an explanation.
"We're awaiting his answer whether or not the company should take action on the misrepresentation that he has committed, if it's true. If so, there will be an administrative hearing and a decision rendered by the company," said Alvarez. – Rappler.com