June 1, 2021

PNP ambulance driver nabbed for extort try on police applicant

MANILA – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Guillermo Eleazar on Tuesday announced the arrest of an ambulance driver of the Health Service in Caloocan City for allegedly offering to facilitate the application of an aspiring policeman in exchange for PHP100,000.

Eleazar said the suspect identified as S/Sgt. Joel Bunagan, 37, was arrested in an entrapment operation by members of the Integrity Monitoring and Enforcement Group (IMEG) in Barangay 175, Camarin, Caloocan City on Monday.

The suspect yielded PHP1,000 marked money, a mobile phone, and a motorcycle.

Eleazar ordered the conduct of summary dismissal proceedings against Bunagan, who was already arrested last year for a similar offense.

Inaalam natin kung paano nanatili pa sa serbisyo ang ungas na pulis na ito. Tutukuyin natin kung sino ang mga kasabwat ng Bunagan na iyan at kanyang mga nilapitan para ‘di masibak sa pwesto. Dapat magsama-sama sila sa kulungan (We are still investigating why this errant police officer was able to remain in service despite his earlier violations. We will identify his accomplices in the service so that they will also be dismissed from the PNP. They should all be in jail)," he said in a statement.

Bunagan is now under the custody of IMEG and is facing criminal charges, including violation of Section 21 (h) of Republic Act 11032 or the Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Act of 2018 which penalizes “fixing and/or collusion in consideration of economic and/or other gain or advantage.”

The suspect was first arrested on April 8 last year in an entrapment operation by operatives of the IMEG and the Intelligence Group (IG) which stemmed from a complaint of another police applicant.

According to a report from the IMEG and IG, Bunagan promised applicants with health issues that they will "pass the medical examinations smoothly" in exchange for a fee ranging from PHP100,000 to PHP150,000. By Priam Nepomuceno(with Lloyd Caliwan/PNA)