The Philippine National Police can file criminal charges against 7 police officers who figured in the abduction of 3 Korean nationals last year even if the victims refused to file the complaint.
"We can still file. If they’re back in Korea, we will coordinate with the Korean embassy to get their statement. Any evidence and electronic recordings can identify the suspects, and we will make them answer for these incidents," said PNP Spokesperson Dionardo Carlos.
Three Korean tourists were allegedly robbed and illegally detained inside the police station for seven hours by seven cops, but the suspects deny this claim.
The cops released the South Koreans after they allegedly paid P300,000. The cops also allegedly took P10,000 from the wallets of the South Koreans before they were released.
A TV Patrol report earlier identified the 7 as PO1 Jayson Ibe, PO1 Ruben Rodriguez II, PO1 Mark Joseph Pineda, PO2 Richard King Agapito, PO3 Arnold Nagayo, PO3 Roentjen Domingo and PO3 Gomerson Evangelista.
The incident happened last December 30, 2016. The victims filed a complaint at the South Korean Embassy last January 5.
The PNP had earlier said that the tourists have returned to Korea and refused to file criminal charges out of fear, so they had been limited to filing administrative charges against the suspects.
Carlos said the immediate action that the PNP has taken is to relieve the erring cops and their superiors from their posts and put them on restrictive custody.
"Seven policemen, two officers, the station commander and the deputy station commander were relieved, they’re put on restrictive custody to answer for the case of the three Koreans," he said.
He also revealed that they are working with the National Bureau of Investigation and other law enforcement agencies, "so definitely, we will take action against these rogue policemen."
"The Chief PNP is serious about it. We will make sure na wag silang pumunta sa iba nilang iligal na qawain," he said. -with report from Jeff Canoy, ABS-CBN News