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Pampanga ‘ninja cop’ dismissed from police service

Rambo Talabong

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Pampanga ‘ninja cop’ dismissed from police service
A 'ninja cop' involved in the anomalous 2013 Pampanga buy-bust is dismissed, but over a 2019 anti-drug operation in Antipolo City, Rizal

MANILA, Philippines – Another so-called “ninja cop” was dismissed from the police service, Philippine National Police (PNP) officer-in-charge Lieutenant General Archie Gamboa said on Monday, November 4.

During a Camp Crame press briefing, Gamboa announced that he has ordered the dismissal of Lieutenant Joven de Guzman.

De Guzman is one of the 13 “ninja cops” who mounted an anomalous anti-drug operation in Pampanga in 2013, which eventually led to the resignation of former PNP chief General Oscar Albayalde.

The 13 cops and Albayalde are currently facing police-filed drug and corruption complaints before the Department of Justice over the operation.

De Guzman, however, was not dismissed over the Pampanga operation, as the case was already decided upon in 2017 and resulted in the 13 cops’ one-rank demotion.

De Guzman was dismissed over a May 2019 anti-drug operation in Antipolo City, Rizal, that he led. A separate police probe found that they planted evidence against their suspects. Three other cops from the 2013 Pampanga operation were also dismissed over the Antipolo City operation.

As a matter of process, De Guzman can still appeal the PNP’s dismissal order, but Gamboa said De Guzman has been unresponsive to their request for comment as the dismissal proceedings moved forward. –

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Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.