Barangay employee nabbed for issuing ‘fake’ travel passes

Published August 3, 2020, 4:18 PM

by Jhon Aldrin Casinas

Charges were filed against a barangay employee in San Juan City after he was arrested for allegedly issuing fake travel authority documents.

San Juan Police chief Col. Jaime Santos said charges for falsification of public documents were filed against Leonardo Puno, 39, a liaison officer of Barangay West Crame, before the City Prosecutors’ Office.

Police said Puno was arrested on July 30 after the travel authority document he was found to be offering to some individuals turned out to be fake.

Santos said the arrest stemmed from a report they received last week about a man allegedly selling fake travel authority documents to people in the area of Road 2 in Barangay West Crame.

“When the police arrived at the area, they found Puno who matched the description of the suspect holding the alleged fake travel authorities,” he said.

Puno was then invited to the city police headquarters and the documents in his possession were verified.

Santos said the names on the travel passes confiscated from the suspect do not correspond to the names in the QR code of the document, and they were likewise not on the list of persons issued with travel authority by the San Juan Police.

The police chief explained that only the police can issue travel authorities. The barangay can only endorse individuals who wish to apply for such documents.

“During questioning, the suspect revealed that he obtained the falsified document at Recto Avenue in Manila from a certain ‘Buboy’ who is responsible for manufacturing and photocopying falsified documents,” Santos said.

Police said Puno admitted to having issued more than 20 travel passes.

The suspect told reporters on Monday (Aug. 3) that he was not selling the travel authority documents, saying that no money was involved in their transaction.

He claimed that he was just helping those applying for a travel authority.

Santos said they will investigate the incident further to establish those who might also be involved.

“We will request the Department of Interior and Local Government to also investigate the matter,” he added.