LTO-7 conducts probe on alleged ‘extortion’ scheme of PMVICs

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CEBU CITY, Philippines — An official of the Land Transportation Office in Central Visayas (LTO-7) has warned private motor vehicle inspection centers (PMVICs) in the region to avoid engaging in extortion activities by intentionally failing vehicle inspections.

In a statement, LTO 7 director Victor Emmanuel Caindec said he received reports of alleged extortion activities after the agency started implementing its online renewal for registrations in some offices in the country.

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“I heard a ‘sumbong’ that some PMVICs threaten to fail your inspection if you don’t get the PACKAGE (which includes registration),” Caindec said in a Facebook post last Feb. 22, 2023, as he expound the steps for online renewal of vehicle registration.

Caindec revealed that he received a complaint on the alleged scheme concerning PMVICs.

“We are gathering details through complaints, and we urge the public to report it to us so that we can investigate and file necessary legal actions against these PMVICs,” he said.

Initially, the regional director said his office received a complaint against a certain PMVIC here in Cebu, but pending further investigation, he could not divulge which PMVIC it is yet.

Under Department of Transportation (DOTr) Memorandum Circular 2019-009 on the “Revised guidelines for the authorization of private motor vehicle inspection centers (PMVICs)” those authorized PMVICs accused of committing violation(s) shall be issued a Show Cause Order by the Authorization Committee.”

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“PMVICs found guilty of violating the terms and conditions of their ‘Authorization Certificate’ and the guidelines stated by the Department may face a minimum penalty of P200,000 and a 30-day suspension and up to the cancellation of their authorization,” the agency said in a statement.

The LTO started its online renewal of motor vehicle registrations through its Land Transportation and Management System (LTMS) portal in February 2023.

The online renewal of registration is in line with the LTO’s observance of Republic Act 11032 of the “Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Delivery Act of 2018.”  /rcg