Fiscal Castro to police: Return car or face charges

By: Mary Claire U. Catado January 07,2016 - 04:28 AM
GRECO'S VEHICLE IS BACK/DEC. 5, 2015: Cebu Daily News senior reporter Ador Mayol peep on the missing vehicle (FORD RANGER) of Greco Sanchez brother of Provincial Board Member Gigi Sanchez that was abondoned at East Capitol road near the corner of Escario street barangay Capitol site across their radio station building.(CDN PHOTO/JUNJIE MENDOZA)

The missing Ford Ranger is found abandoned at East Capitol road in December 5, 2015. (CDN PHOTO/JUNJIE MENDOZA)

Cebu City Prosecutor Mary Ann Castro threatened to file a carnapping case against the PNP Regional Highway Patrol Unit 7 (RHPU 7) if they  don’t   return the stolen Ford Ranger Wildtrak pick-up under their custody by  today.

Castro and her  estranged  husband Leodegreco Sanchez are the registered owners of the vehicle.

Castro sent a demand letter dated January 4 to the highway patrol unit, asking them to turn over the pick-up truck within three days or she would  charge them for carnapping before the Office of the Ombudsman Military.

PO2 Justin Paul Sarsaba, RHPU-7 investigator, however, said   the vehicle would remain in their custody since it is still the subject of an  investigation stemming from complaints that the pickup was stolen.

Separate carnapping complaints for the vehicle were filed by Castro and Sanchez in October after the couple had a falling out.

Each accused the other of taking the brand-new vehicle, whose installment payments are being made by Castro through a bank loan in her name.

“A continuing investigation will be conducted by this office to determine those responsible in the reported loss of the vehicle and the apparent intention to conceal its identity,” Sarsaba said.

The vehicle was  found last Dec. 21, 2015 parked along a street in barangay Kamputhaw. The original black body was repainted white.

The vehicle was later impounded by HPU 7  for macro-etching examination to determine its ownership. Examation by  the Crime Laboratory Office 7 showed that it wasthe same black Ford Ranger.

Prosecutor Castro, however, is  determined to recover the vehicle.

She said that she  received a letter last December 23 regarding the recovery of the vehicle.

“I will hold  you and your office responsible for any adulteration committed against the subject vehicle,” read the letter.

Castro said that RHPU 7 did not inform her or her husband about the  recovery of the vehicle nor ask their  permission to take custody of  it.

Castro said  the RHPU 7 does not have a legal ground to impound the vehicle.

Castro filed her carnapping complaint on Oct. 14, 2015 while her hsuband Sanchez filed his complaint on Oct. 26.

On  Dec. 21, 2015, the highway patrol group towed away and imppounded the  Ford Ranger left parked along East Capitol Road, barangay Kamputhaw.

The vehicle was said to be the same reported missing Ford Ranger that was turned over to BPI Family Bank after its recovery by Prosecutor Castro, the spot report said.

But BPI Family Bank manager Elmer Ocaba denied receiving the vehicle from Castro and declined to receive the highway patrol unit’s official request for  macro-etching.

With this, , the RHPU 7 towed the vehicle and impounded it in their compound in barangay Lahug, Cebu City.

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