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Police Linked to Disappearance of Heavy Equipment
« on: December 01, 2007, 03:57:20 PM »
By Kit Bagaipo
The Bohol Chronicle

The provincial police command has sought the transfer of Supt. Eduardo Saavedra to a post in the regional police headquarters after he was linked to a P20-million worth of robbery of heavy equipment in Ubay town.

Saavedra, who was the chief of police in Ubay, is currently on "floating status", according to Bohol Police Director SSupt. Edgardo Ingking in an interview with the Chronicle yesterday.

Ingking bared that he has requested the PNP regional office to transfer Saavedra to prevent undue influence of ongoing investigations levelled against him.

An administrative complaint for grave misconduct and serious irregularity in the performance of duty was filed by Ingking against Saavedra at the National Police Commission (Napolcom) Central Visayas.

Meanwhile, charges of theft is being prepared by SCP Construction, which owns the heavy equipment pilfered and stolen by two suspects allegedly with the knowledge of Saavedra.

The case stemmed from a series of pilferage and the eventual loss of 11 heavy equipment stationed in barangays Bulilis and Himbabauran, Ubay town.

The heavy equipment were owned by SCP Construction, one of the contractors building lateral canals of the BHIP-2 (Bayongan Dam).

In his affidavit, SCP Construction administrative officer Engr. Ismael Malagar identified two of the suspects as Ciriaco Bulilis and Anita Felisilda. Both are residents of Ubay town.

According to Malagar, the first theft happened sometime in July where the suspects allegedly cut-up and stole parts of the parked heavy equipment.

This incident was followed by major thefts of body parts of the said equipment.

These incidents were reported to the Ubay police station headed by Saavedra, according to Malagar.

However, Malagar claimed there was no sincere action on the part of Saavedra regarding the incidents.

On October 20, Malagar received a text message that one of their equipment, a Kawasaki KLD 95 pay loader was again cut up by unidentified persons.

The pay loader's parts including its bucket, hydraulics and cylinder booms were reportedly loaded in a boom truck in barangay Himbabauran, Malagar said.

He immediately informed Ingking regarding the relayed information.

Ingking called up Saavedra instructing the latter to seize the stolen parts and apprehend the suspects. Ingking asked for immediate reports of Saavedra's action.

Instead, one SPO2 Ferdinand Vergara of the Ubay PNP was sent by Saavedra to respond to the incident.

When Malagar went to the site on said day, however, he was surprised that the parts and the equipment where already gone including the suspects.

According to Malagar, despite the report that the equipment were stolen, Saavedra allegedly had a "lukewarm attitude" towards the incident.

In a separate affidavit, Vergara stated that when he responded to the scene, he saw several armed men together with the suspects. Vergara said he could not arrest them as he did not have a back-up.

According to Vergara, he was later told by Saavedra to allow the suspects to leave with the stolen parts as these were "justified payments" for rental owed by SCP Construction to the lot owner where the equipment were placed.

Malagar told the Chronicle that the amount of the stolen equipment amounts to some P20-million.

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