THE Cebu Provincial Prosecutor’s Office yesterday filed “corruption” charges against a market collector who allegedly tried to buy off policemen in Consolacion town after the arrest of his nephew in an anti-drug operation.
Giovanni Pepito, 45, was charged before the Municipal Circuit Trial Court of Consolacion and Cordova on Friday afternoon. Bail was recommended at P10,000.
Because there was not enough time to process his bail bond, Pepito had to spend another night in jail, said Chief Insp. Roderick Gonzales, chief of the Consolacion Police Station.
Pepito was indicted on charges of violating article 212 of the Revised Penal Code or the “corruption of public officials.”
Cebu Provincial Prosecutor Pepita Jane Petralba said “corruption of public officials” penalizes any person, who shall have made the offers or promises or given the gifts or presents.
Under the law, anyone found guilty of the charge faces an imprisonment of eight to 12 years.
Pepito, a resident of Barangay Cansaga, was arrested in an entrapment operation inside the Consolacion Police Station at about 6 p.m. Wednesday, after he handed over to a cop P30,000 in cash wrapped in yellow pad paper.
Two hours before the arrest, Pepito allegedly called up PO2 Zeusito Veloso and offered to pay P30,000 for the police to downgrade the charges against his 21-year-old nephew, Jeric.
Jeric was facing charges for selling illegal drugs, a non-bailable offense under Republic Act 9168 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.
Pepito, a job order employee of the Consolacion municipal government, allegedly pleaded to the police to instead file a case for illegal possession of drugs, a bailable offense.
Police tagged Jeric as the number two drug personality in Consolacion town.
In an interview after his arrest, Pepito admitted that he handed over P30,000 to the Consolacion police; but said that it was his cousin — the father of Jeric — who requested him to give the amount to the police.
Pepito claimed that he did not know that the money was intended to ask the police to downgrade the charges against his nephew.