‘We’re looking very good,’ says lawyer for Supt. Derilo, Ylanan
Yesterday’s probe at the Philippine National Police (PNP) headquarters in Camp Crame on Superintendents Rex Derilo and George Ylanan for their alleged involvement in Cebu’s illegal drugs operation was to be the first and last, according to their lawyer Inocencio dela Cerna Jr.
“No more schedule hearings. That’s how confident we are on this baseless and malicious allegation,” dela Cerna said in a text message to Cebu Daily News.
According to dela Cerna, they requested the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) in Camp Crame to no longer conduct any hearings regarding the bribery claims made by Cebuano drug lord Franz Sabalones against Derilo and Ylanan as they will, from henceforth, answer Sabalones’ accusations in writing.
“Due process was observed. We have the documents, and we will submit the counter affidavit in 10 days, and CIDG will wrap up their investigation,” said dela Cerna in his text message to CDN.
The Cebu-based lawyer was tight-lipped on how the proceedings went and refused to answer phone calls saying that he would rather send his statement through text.
“As much as I would want to tell you the result of the inquiry, I am bound by confidentiality issues. This I can tell, we are looking very good. But you can add that the accusations were all hearsay and can’t connect my clients even to the least bit involvement on the issue,” he said.
Derilo and Ylanan were among 18 policemen recently identified by Sabalones, a drug lord based in San Fernando town, southern Cebu, as his alleged protectors.
Sabalones, who surrendered to Philippine National Police Chief Director General Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa last Aug. 7, also linked an agent of the regional Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) as among those who received bribes from him.
A drug matrix shown by UNTV included the names Derilo, Ylanan and Supt. Teodulfo Manatad, the former chief of the Carcar City Police Office.
The payola ranging from P1,000 to P150,000 a week was reportedly delivered to the policemen and the PDEA agent through Sabalones’ cook, colleagues in the gym, billiard buddies, and neighbors who served as his bagmen.
Sabalones allegedly budgeted P507,000 every week as protection money to the policemen and the PDEA agent.
Derilo was the chief of the Regional Intelligence Division of the Police Regional Office in Central Visayas (PRO-7) while Ylanan was the head of the
Special Operations Group (RSOG-7) before they, along with three other police colonels, were ordered relieved from their posts by PNP Chief dela Rosa last July 15.
Derilo was transferred to the Zamboanga Peninsula police office, while Ylanan was assigned to northern Mindanao.
Following Sabalones’ disclosure, the PNP Internal Affairs Service (IAS) directed the CIDG to lead the investigation against the concerned police officers.
Both Derilo and Ylanan had consistently denied the allegations.
Derilo, in an interview last Monday expressed dismay over his inclusion in Sabalones’ drugs matrix, saying he and his family were badly affected by the accusations.
He believed Sabalones fabricated stories against him to put him down.
Derilo also threatened to file a P10 million damage suit against the drug lord.
Ylanan, for his part, refused to answer queries from the media except to say that he was chief of RSOG for only two months.
Derilo and Ylanan led the team that killed Central Visayas’ number one drug lord Jeffrey “Jaguar” Diaz in Las Piñas City last June 17.
Following Diaz’ death, the two officers and their men faced accusations of a rub out as doubts were raised about the timing of their operation against Jaguar.
The police operation was done barely a month before President Rodrigo Duterte assumed his post and just days after Diaz granted a media interview expressing his intent to surrender to Duterte and identify people involved in the illegal drugs trade.
CHURCH ON EJK HEARINGS
Meanwhile, the unrelenting rise of extrajudicial killings in the country which has opened the floodgates of investigation by the Senate committee on justice and human rights, has Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma hoping that the inquiries will uncover the truth.
“The truth is very important and yet, it is not as simple as black and white, Palma said.
“ It’s in the complexity of many things,” he added while lamenting the state at which the hearings had descended last week as they were marred by squabbles among senators conducting the inquiries.“I feel a little bit sad for the country because we kind of arrived at a point where we are sliding to the point of mudslinging,” he said.
“I am prayerful and I hope that somehow, someday, most of these things will bring about the good of the country,” Palma added.
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