LTFRB-Bicol official sacked for alleged extortion

Published December 4, 2019, 5:16 PM

by AJ Siytangco

By Alexandria Dennise San Juan 

The director of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board’s (LTFRB) Bicol Regional Office was axed from his post over alleged extortion for supposedly demanding monthly “protection” money from public utility vehicle (PUV) operators in the region.

(LTFRB / MANILA BULLETIN)
(LTFRB / MANILA BULLETIN)

In an order issued by the Office of the President last November, Vladimir Kahulugan was terminated from his post as the LTFRB Bicol regional director immediately following a probe that showed his alleged involvement in extortion activities.

Based on the investigation conducted by the Department of Transportation (DOTr), it was revealed that Kahulugan and personnel from the LTFRB Enforcement Team identified as Narciso Juntereal, Robert Pacurib, Jose Pado, and Eduardo Felix were said to be preying on bus and UV Express operators.

The DOTr’s probe stemmed from a complaint of a bus operator who reported that the officers were extorting money from them every month.

Further investigation revealed that Kahulugan and his cohorts were also involved in “hulidap” operations wherein public utility vehicles are apprehended with or without violations but will later be released in exchange for payment from their operators.

Juntereal, Pacurib, Pado and Felix remain at large after eluding an initial entrapment operation hatched by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) of Albay police last July.

Personnel of DOTr’s Investigation, Security, and Law Enforcement Staff (ISLES) continued to monitor Kahulugan for three months. They discovered `that the official made use of the Bicol Inter-Agency Road Safety Operation (BIARSO) in his illegal activities.

Kahulugan organized the BIARSO along with the Regional Office 5 of the Philippine National Police-Highway Patrol Group as an anti-colorum group.

According to the DOTr, they have informants who confirmed that Kahulugan solicited cash from bus operators to help fund their office’s celebration of the agency’s anniversary.

He also reportedly connived with his cohorts at the BIARSO to extort money from apprehended vehicles, and was also allegedly protecting “colorum” PUVs or those units without government franchises.

Following the investigation, the ISLES recommended to Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade that criminal charges be filed against Kahulugan for his alleged extortion activities and that the BIARSO be deactivated.

Kahulugan, a retired police colonel, took over the regional director post in April 2018 and replaced Jun Abrazaldo who was also sacked for to his alleged corrupt practices.

For his part, the DOTr chief lauded the officials who led the probe and pointed out that the termination of Kahulugan is proof that corrupt officials have no place in the agency.

The DOTr also vowed to continue its crackdown against scalawags in the government.

 
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LTFRB-Bicol official sacked for alleged extortion

Published December 4, 2019, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Alexandria Dennise San Juan 

The director of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board’s (LTFRB) Bicol Regional Office was axed from his post over alleged extortion for supposedly demanding monthly “protection” money from public utility vehicle (PUV) operators in the region.

(LTFRB / MANILA BULLETIN)
(LTFRB / MANILA BULLETIN)

In an order issued by the Office of the President last November, Vladimir Kahulugan was terminated from his post as the LTFRB Bicol regional director immediately following a probe that showed his alleged involvement in extortion activities.

Based on the investigation conducted by the Department of Transportation (DOTr), it was revealed that Kahulugan and personnel from the LTFRB Enforcement Team identified as Narciso Juntereal, Robert Pacurib, Jose Pado, and Eduardo Felix were said to be preying on bus and UV Express operators.

The DOTr’s probe stemmed from a complaint of a bus operator who reported that the officers were extorting money from them every month.

Further investigation revealed that Kahulugan and his cohorts were also involved in “hulidap” operations wherein public utility vehicles are apprehended with or without violations but will later be released in exchange for payment from their operators.

Juntereal, Pacurib, Pado and Felix remain at large after eluding an initial entrapment operation hatched by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) of Albay police last July.

Personnel of DOTr’s Investigation, Security, and Law Enforcement Staff (ISLES) continued to monitor Kahulugan for three months. They discovered `that the official made use of the Bicol Inter-Agency Road Safety Operation (BIARSO) in his illegal activities.

Kahulugan organized the BIARSO along with the Regional Office 5 of the Philippine National Police-Highway Patrol Group as an anti-colorum group.

According to the DOTr, they have informants who confirmed that Kahulugan solicited cash from bus operators to help fund their office’s celebration of the agency’s anniversary.

He also reportedly connived with his cohorts at the BIARSO to extort money from apprehended vehicles, and was also allegedly protecting “colorum” PUVs or those units without government franchises.

Following the investigation, the ISLES recommended to Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade that criminal charges be filed against Kahulugan for his alleged extortion activities and that the BIARSO be deactivated.

Kahulugan, a retired police colonel, took over the regional director post in April 2018 and replaced Jun Abrazaldo who was also sacked for to his alleged corrupt practices.

For his part, the DOTr chief lauded the officials who led the probe and pointed out that the termination of Kahulugan is proof that corrupt officials have no place in the agency.

The DOTr also vowed to continue its crackdown against scalawags in the government.

 
CLICK HERE TO SIGN-UP
 

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