- PAO has threatened airport security personnel with counter-charges if they will continue filing charges over alleged ‘tanim-cases’
- Chief Persida Acosta says they will file cases of planting evidence
- The PAO chief’s statement came after another OFW was a******d at NAIA with bullet allegedly found in her possession
MANILA, Philippines – The Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) has threatened to file counter-charges against personnel of the Office of Transportation Security (OTS) and the Philippine National Police Aviation Security Group (PNP-AVSEGROUP) if they would not stop from filing charges against victims of the alleged ‘tanim-bala’ scheme at the airport.
PAO chief Persida Rueda-Acosta made the statement at the preliminary hearing of overseas Filipino worker (OFW) Gina Maliwat; another alleged victim of bullet-planting at Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
“Pag hindi pa sila tumigil, mapipilitan na kami magsampa ng kaso at rumesbak… planting of evidence ang ikakaso,” ABS-CBN News quoted Acosta as telling reporters. [If they will not stop, we will be forced to get back and file counter-charges…we will charge them with planting of evidence.]
Acosta noted that the court has so far dismissed 32 ‘tanim-bala’ cases filed by the airport security personnel against different individuals.
“Nakakapagod na. Mga taga-PAO pagod na, mga prosecutors pagod na. Nakakatawa na ang bansa natin,” Acosta said; insisting further that finding a single bullet in the possession of a person does not constitute a crime of illegal possession of firearm.
[This has become exhausting. The PAO personnel are tired, the prosecutors are tired. Our country has become a laughing stock.]
Maliwat was a******d by airport authorities last January 2 after a caliber .45 bullet was discovered in one of her luggage.
But the Macau-bound OFW maintained nothing was found at the screening of her luggage at NAIA Terminal 2; only to be accosted at the final screening after the bullet was discovered in one of the outer pockets of her bag.
She vehemently denied owning the bullet and was allowed to leave by the inquest prosecutor after her case was referred for preliminary investigation.
“I have no intention to possess or handle bullets. I don’t deal with bullets of guns, considering that I am a mere domestic helper whose dream/intent is to work abroad to help support my family financially,” read Maliwat’s counter-affidavit which she swore at the Philippine consular office in Macau.