EXCLUSIVE: Makati City PSD member arrested for ‘extorting’ P200,000 from bar owner

Published July 23, 2021, 9:57 AM

by Jel Santos

A member of the Makati City Public Safety Department (PSD), who allegedly extorted P200,000 from a restaurant-bar owner in Barangay Poblacion, was arrested by policemen on Thursday night (July 23) during an entrapment operation in Makati City.

(Photos courtesy of Makati City Police)

Police identified the suspect as John Rey B. Villarino, 30, of Barangay La Paz, Makati.

Based on a police report, Villarino was arrested after accepting the marked money at Howzat Sports Bar on Fermina Street in Barangay Poblacion, Makati.

His arrest stemmed from the complaint of 58-year-old businessman Jonathan Dean Thorp.

According to Thorp, the suspect threatened to close his bar should he not give him P100,000 a month.

On July 5, 2021, Hozwat Sports Bar was shut down by the city for violating health protocols and curfew ordinance.

“Villarino of the Makati PSD said they will allow us to open again should we pay P200,000, and give P100,000 monthly,” he told the Manila Bulletin.

“I was really appalled by this, that’s why I reported it to the police. There is a pandemic and our business is striving, and what they are doing is killing us,” Thorp added.

Meanwhile, it is not clear whether Villarino was working alone or has cohorts in the extortion.

During his arrest, he told policemen that he was just there to have a drink.

“Wala po akong ginagawang masama. Nandito lang po ako para mag-inom (I did nothing wrong. I was just here to drink),” he shouted as he tried to evade being arrested by the police.