PHILIPPINE National Police (PNP) Chief Rodolfo Azurin Jr. has signed the dismissal orders of five police personnel implicated in the case of a missing e-sabong (electronic cockfight betting) master agent, PNP spokesperson Colonel Jean Fajardo said on Tuesday, December 20, 2022.

Fajardo said the Internal Affairs Service has found substantial evidence on the administrative charges filed against policemen Daryl Paghangaan, Roy Navarete, Henry Sasaluya, Michael Claveria and Regil Brosas over the alleged kidnapping of Ricardo Lasco, an e-sabong master agent who was abducted from his residence in San Pedro, Laguna in 2021.

She said these policemen are currently under restrictive custody at the Calabarzon regional police headquarters.

“Once mareceive nila ‘yung official copy ng kanilang dismissal order, then the PNP will let go of them dahil wala na rin jurisdiction ang PNP sa kanila. Kailangan nlang po talaga maipa-receive sa kanila officially para at least, they will be given the opportunity, as part of due process to appeal ‘yung recommended penalty sa kanila,” said Fajardo.

In April, charges of serious illegal detention/kidnapping and robbery were filed before the Department of Justice against the five policemen after they were positively identified by Lasco’s wife, Princess Montañez, and her sister, cousin and mother during a Senate inquiry as among the 10 armed men who forcibly took Lasco from their residence.

Montañez said the suspects identified themselves as members of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and claimed that Lasco has a standing arrest warrant for estafa, thus they “arrested” him.

The suspects also allegedly took valuables from the house, including jewelry, gadgets and wallets and a vault containing cash.

Lacso is still considered missing.

The Philippine National Police is probing eight cases involving the disappearances of 34 e-sabong enthusiasts since 2020. (SunStar Philippines)