The Puerto Princesa City Jail-Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (PPCJ-BJMP) has called on the City Council to speed up the passing of a proposed ordinance that would penalize jail visitors who will be caught sneaking contraband items.
The city jail management made the call Thursday after their staff and personnel seized “20 packs of tobacco and 10 packs of cigarettes” hidden by an “unknown suspect” inside the BJMP van parked outside their gate.
Jail Officer 2 Marlito Anza, spokesperson of the PPCJ-BJMP, said the proposed ordinance to impose punishment on violators has been pending in the City Council for more than five years already.
“Base doon sa record, nagsimula tayong mag-propose noong 2013, [ang] tagal na, so five years in the making. We are still appealing sa city government na sana ay paboran na nila, aprubahan na nila, kasi mahirap na walang nagiging ngipin ‘yong mga implementations natin ng mga standard operating procedures na mga policies natin dito,” said Anza.
(Base on our record, we started proposing in 2013, that’s a long time ago, so five years in the making. We are still appealing to the city government to favor it, approve it because it’s hard for the standard operating procedures we are implementing not to have that teeth.)
Anza reiterated the proposed ordinance aims to give necessary penalties to individuals who will be caught smuggling contrabands in the jails, and detention and rehabilitation centers in Puerto Princesa City.
He added the only action they can do without the ordinance is to ban the visitors from going to the facility for a certain period of time.
Anza said it was the officers of the PPCJ-BJMP who learned about the January 19 plan to bring in the tobacco and cigarette contraband inside the jail facility weeks ago.
But the detainee who seems to be their owner, a certain Roger Teodoro, was only caught on Sunday, January 20, following an entrapment operation.
Teodoro was caught in the act of taking the contrabands that the PPCJ-BJMP “replicated.”
“Pupuwede na sanang kunin na natin ‘yong mga contrabands, but isa sa mga goals din natin, ay malaman din ng management kung sino talaga ang involved na mga PDL (persons deprived of liberty). Ang ginawa ng management, dinala muna ang van doon sa sports complex para palitan ‘yong box na nakalagay doon, gumawa ng replica. Hindi puwedeng palitan dito, for sure may mga lookouts ‘yan sila. Kapag nalaman nila na alam na namin at nasunog na ang information, pagdating dito sa loob [ng van containing the contrabands] wala nang susunggab doon [na PDL],” said Anza.
(We could have seized the contrabands immediately, but one of the management’s goals then was also to know who were the persons deprived of liberty involved. What the management did was bring the van to the sports complex to replicate the box inside. We cannot do that here because for sure, they have lookouts. If they find out and our information got burned, when the van goes inside, no one among the PDL will take the box.)
He said they are still in the process of in-depth investigation to know the identity of the suspects.
Anza said the detainee who got caught will be receiving his own set of “authorized disciplinary punishment” under the PPCJ-BJMP correctional board.