By JIGGER JERUSALEM
of Mindanao Gold Star Daily
CAGAYAN de Oro City––Two key officials of the Cagayan de Oro City Police Office (Cocpo) have denied any participation in illegal gambling operations in the city.
The separate denials came after DxCC, a radio station owned by Radio Mindanao Network (RMN), went public with a list of suspected operators of illegal gambling machines and their alleged protectors in the National Police.
The DxCC listed the surnames of five police officials who were allegedly serving as protectors: Pangalanan, Estrada, Mendoza, Tumanda and Aguillon.
Chief Insp. Bernardo Mendoza, Cocpo’s intelligence unit chief, and Chief Insp. Danildo Tumanda, the city police’s chief for administration, strongly denied any link to crime syndicates specializing in illegal gambling operations.
Mendoza threatened to file libel charges against DxCC even as he accused the radio station of ‘‘irresponsible broadcasting.’’
DxCC listed one ‘‘Mendoza’’ as the alleged protector of Lilian Tan.
Mendoza said he spent much of his time studying and training and only returned to Cocpo last Dec. 4.
He said he was bothered because his relatives and friends in Bohol and Bukidnon heard the DxCC reports.
Mendoza said he was consulting a lawyer and would ask the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) a copy of the DxCC broadcasts.
“I strongly deny the accusation,” said Mendoza. “I’m not going to sleep on this one.”
Mendoza said he first heard the name Lilian Tan when he was assigned in Ozamiz City in 2004. But he said he has never met with Tan.
Chief Insp. Tumanda maintained his innocence. He said he also had nothing to do with Cocpo until he was assigned back to it last December.
Like Mendoza, Tumanda said he went on ‘‘schooling’’ starting on Nov. 21, 2007. He went back last year and was appointed as Cocpo’s chief for administration last Jan. 15.
Tumanda said his work since January was office-based. “How can I be an illegal gambling protector nga wala man koy direct contact sa mga police line units in terms of operational activities?” he asked rhetorically.
The DxCC list linked a certain ‘‘Tumanda’’ to Donque Po, another alleged operator of illegal gambling machines.
“We have not even met,” said Tumanda. “How can we protect illegal gambling nga naa man tay mga station commanders? Dili man nato pwede galungan kini sila (station commanders).”