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Bacolod City, Philippines Wednesday, March 9, 2011
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2,000 cops
charged for drugs


About 2,000 policemen have been charged in court for drug-related offenses in the past decade, Rep. Jeffrey Ferrer (Neg. Occ., 4th District), vice chairman of the Committee on Dangerous Drugs Board, said.

Alarmed by the number of policemen \facing drug-related charges, as shown in the reports submitted to them by the Philippine National Police, Ferrer said the committee has recommended the mandatory and unannounced annual drug testing of policemen, and of military personnel.

He, however, said the 2,000 erring policemen, some of whom had already been dismissed from the service, constitute 0.6 percent of the total manpower strength of the PNP.

Early this year, 178 police personnel were dismissed for drug-related offenses, records of the Department of Interior and Local Government show.

More than 50 percent of them were users, peddlers or protectors of drug syndicates, DILG records also showed.

In the proposed 2012 budget, Ferrer said they have recommended P15 million for drug-testing of military personnel, and P10 million for PNP members, that will be administered by the Department of Health in every region of the country.

Ferrer said the committee only has a meager budget of P2 million for the drug-testing of more than 250,000 military and police personnel.

Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo said policemen involved in drugs will automatically undergo summary dismissal proceedings.

The National Police Commission, chaired by Robredo, has taken over the review of misconduct cases against policemen, especially those related to drugs, from the Internal Affairs Services of the PNP.

But for policemen facing harassment charges for doing their job, the DILG has set aside a P5 million fund for hiring lawyers to assist them.*GPB




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