Dismissed Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Alan Purisima pleaded not guilty of graft at the Sandiganbayan 6th division this Monday, June 20. He arrived in the court past 8 am, along with his lawyer, Dexter Hector Corpus for his arraignment. This is in line with his graft case filed against him over the controversial P100-million deal with a problematic company in May 2011.
Last May 18, the Sandiganbayan issued an arrest warrant to Purisima and others for the same case. Two days later, the former PNP chief was reportedly arrested at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3 after his arrival from Butuan. Purisima, along with Corpus went straight to Sandiganbayan and posted a P30,000 bail.
An appointee and good friend of President Benigno Aquino III, Purisima resigned from his post in February 2015 during the height of the controversy, and was later dismissed. This is after the Ombudsman said that Purisima entered into an deal with Werfast Documentary Agency, Inc. as the courier service provider of the PNP, despite the firm’s questionable status.
The Ombudsman found out that when the deal was made, Werfast was not yet registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). In addition, the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) has not given authority to the company to offer courier delivery service. The contract was also said to be agreed without a public bidding.
Also ordered to be arrested for the same case are Retired Civil Service Security Group chief Gil Meneses, former Firearms and Explosives Office (FEO) chief Napoleon Estilles, former FEO assistant chief Allan Parreño, former FEO Education and Enforcement Management Division chief Melchor Reyes, and Servicing Legal Officer Ford Tuazon.
The anti-graft court also noted Werfast incorporators Salud Bautista, Mario Juan, Lorna Perena, Juliana Pasia and Enrique Valerio as Purisima’s co-accused in the case. Besides the ex-PNP chief, 16 individuals were identified as allegedly involved in the graft case. However, six of them have posted bail even before the arrest order was issued.