MANILA – Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief, Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, has ordered the dismissal from the service of an ambulance driver of the PNP Health Service for grave misconduct after he was caught extorting money from a police applicant.
The dismissal of Staff Sgt. Joel Zalun Bunagan took effect on Monday.
“Tuluyan na nating tinanggal sa serbisyo itong si Bunagan. Sinabi ko naman sa inyo na walang puwang sa PNP ang mga pulis na sangkot sa iligal na gawain (We have completely removed Bunagan from service. I told you that there is no room in the PNP for police involved in illegal activities),” Eleazar said in a statement sent to reporters on Wednesday.
“Personal ko tinututukan ang mga kaso ng tiwaling pulis dahil seryoso ako sa pangakong binitawan ko na linisin at magpatupad ng reporma sa organisasyon (I personally focus on cases of corrupt police officers because I am serious about my promise to clean up the force and implement organizational reform).”
Bunagan, 37, was arrested in an entrapment operation by members of the Integrity Monitoring and Enforcement Group (IMEG) in Barangay 175, Camarin, Caloocan City on May 31.
He was reportedly demanding PHP100,000 from a police applicant in exchange for facilitating his entry into the PNP.
The suspect, who was out on bail at the time of his arrest, yielded PHP1,000 in marked money, a mobile phone, and a motorcycle.
Records show that Bunagan was arrested in an entrapment operation in Barangay Kaligayahan, Novaliches, Quezon City by the IMEG for the same offense in April last year.
Eleazar ordered summary dismissal proceedings against Bunagan who was already arrested last year for a similar offense.
“Hindi ako titigil hangga’t hindi nauubos ang mga tiwaling pulis na ito. Bukod sa mga kriminal na kaso, talagang tutuluyan ko kayong sibakin sa serbisyo (I will not stop until these corrupt cops are gone. Aside from lodging criminal cases, I’m definitely going to keep you out of service),” Eleazar said.
Bunagan is facing several criminal charges in court, including violation of Republic Act (RA) 11032 or the Ease of Doing Business and Efficient Government Service Act of 2018 and RA 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act. (PNA)