MANILA - Senator Ronald Dela Rosa on Tuesday said he has no regrets recommending Oscar Albayalde to replace him as the country's top cop despite his alleged involvement in the recycling of illegal drugs.
Speaking to ANC's Headstart, Dela Rosa said he knew that Albayalde was relieved from his post as head of the Pampanga police due to command responsibility over the "ninja cops" row but added that no case was filed against him.
"As far as I'm concerned, he was clean. Performance-wise, nakita naman ninyo how he performed as [National Capital Region Police Office] chief. Ano ngayon ang problema kung inirecommend ko siya?" he said.
Albayalde was head of the Pampanga police when 13 of its officers were accused of pilfering some P648 million worth of shabu from a 2013 operation against a suspected Chinese drug lord.
Former Criminal Investigation and Detection Group chief Benjamin Magalong accused Albayalde of blocking the dismissal order against his former subordinates, which the former PNP chief denied.
Another retired police official, Rudy Lacadin, claimed Albayalde called him up to inquire about the case of the so-called "ninja cops" and allegedly admitted that he got some of the drug loot.
Albayalde stepped down as PNP chief last October 14, ahead of his official retirement on November 8, when he turned 56.
"That was wrong kung tinulungan mo," Dela Rosa said about the allegations against Albayalde.
"Alam mo gravity ng kanilang offense. Still, that remains to be seen kung anong mangyari d'yan sa korte. So far ngayon 'yung mga testimonies na sinasabi puro lang naman hearsay," he added.
"Kinalkal 'yung past niya, doon siya minalas. Ano 'yung past niya na 'yun, wala na ako doon because it did not happen during my incumbency as chief PNP."
Last week, National Police Commission (Napolcom) said Albayalde will not face any administrative charges over the 2013 drug raid in Pampanga.
The Senate Blue Ribbon Committee earlier recommended the filing of drug and graft charges against Albayalde and his former subordinates.