By Martin Sadongdong
Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Oscar Albayalde reiterated on Sunday that the apprehension of National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) consultant Vicente Ladlad was mandated by the law as the suspect’s wife apologized for obstructing justice during his arrest.
“We reiterate that the arrest of Communist Party of the Philippines-Central Committee member and head of its National United Front Commission Vicente Ladlad is for violation of Republic Act 10591, or the Comprehensive Law on Firearms and Ammunition,” Albayalde said.
“The confiscation of high-powered firearms and explosives in the possession of Ladlad and two others is a result of a lawful search made by the police witnessed and certified by officials of the Homeowners Association,” he added.
Ladlad was arrested on Thursday in Quezon City when police, implementing a search warrant, found a cache of firearms and explosives from his possession.
Prior to this, Ladlad’s wife, Fides, issued an apology to Albayalde because of a scene where she attempted to force her way into Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City where Ladlad had undergone booking procedures.
At one point, Albayalde said Fides blocked a police mobile as she expressed her strong intent to see her husband.
Due to the incident, Albayalde said they were studying the filing of charges, specifically for obstruction of justice, against Fides.
“I hope General Albayalde will find it in his heart to forgive me when his charming wife, Mrs. Albayalde, will also obstruct justice with her bare hands by blocking a police van because he’s imprisoned inside and she knows not where he will be brought, or what perchance will happen to him because of a state malady called evidencia plantida de pulis,” Fides said in a statement.
“I’ve had enough of my 3 (sic) minutes of fame battling ogres to protect my husband, Vic Ladlad, as should fewer wives be doing should the same fate befall their own luckless husbands,” she added.
However, Fides also appealed to pro-bono lawyers to help her should the PNP chief decides to pursue a case against her.
Apology accepted but…
For his part, Albayalde said he understands Fides’ impulsive acts and accepts her apology. However, he hinted that the filing of case against Fides remains an option for them.
“I understand her deep concern for the well-being of her husband and as a Christian, I am inclined to graciously accept her apology,” he said.
“However, I must reiterate we are a nation of laws not of men. And violation of laws has its consequences,” he added.
Albayalde then encouraged the public to “seek redress in the proper forum, a right all citizens enjoy under our Constitution.”
“Rest assured we are conscientious in observing our mandate to serve and protect, as well as to uphold human rights and dignity of the accused. For our country to achieve lasting peace, progress and prosperity, we all need to work together. We once again call on the public to observe the rule of the law in our everyday lives,” he stated.