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Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Espinosa's affidavit tags De Lima, 49 others as Kerwin's coddlers

Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa tagged 50 individuals, including Senator Leila De Lima, as the protectors of the illegal drug activities of his son Kerwin.

In hi six-page affidavit taken by Albuera policemen in August, Espinosa also pointed to several local government officials and ranking police officers.

Aside from De Lima, Espinosa also named a Governor Petilla, a Vice Governor Loreto, and generals Dolina, Loot and Espina.

Espinosa's sworn statement came to fore two days after he was killed in an alleged shootout with policemen inside the Leyte Sub-Provincial jail.

In a text message to GMA News Online, Albuera, Leyte chief of police Chief Inspector Jove Espenido said Espinosa had identified 226 people who provided protection to Kerwin's narcotics business, said to be the largest in Eastern Visayas.

De Lima has since denied knowing and receiving drug money from suspected drug lords like Kerwin to fund her senatorial campaign.

The allegation was the basis of a complaint filed by the Albuera police against her before the Office of the Ombudsman in October.

De Lima, Espina, Veloso

Sought for comment on the latest revelation on Espinosa's accusation against her, De Lima sent the following text message: "Another invention from their factory of lies. #InventPaMore."

In a statement, former PNP Deputy Director General Leonardo Espina said police investigators "have determined and concluded that Victor L. Espina Jr., my brother-in-law, indeed used my name and took advantage of the position I held then in 2015 and made it appear before the Espinosas that I was aware of the reported illegal transactions he made with them."

"As a result of this extensive fact-finding investigation, charges have reportedly been filed against Victor Espina Jr. before the court for trial," Espina said.

The former PNP officer-in-charge added, "God has kept me steadfast in my course not to give in to the temptations like those posed by such persons as this Kerwin Espinosa."

"I could not have influenced or protected people I never met... I had neither the opportunity nor the need to meet Kerwin Espinosa or his witnesses," he said in his post.

"I also could not have protected Espinosa in any of my roles as Commissioner, Justice, Professor, a retired private citizen, or as a 1- month old Congressman," he added.

Veloso said Chief Supt. Elmer Beltejar, chief of the PNP Region 8, has already assured him that intelligence reports gathered by his team had shown he was "clearly not a protector of the drug trade."

He also said since becoming congressman, over 2,000 drug addicts in the third district of Leyte have surrendered. He said he has "spearheaded" legislation for the rehabilitation of drug addicts and improvement of anti-drug enforcement in Leyte.

GMA News Online is still trying to get the comment of the other individuals implicated by Espinosa before he was killed over the weekend.

Armed protectors

Espinosa, in his affidavit, also disclosed that his son Kerwin was running an armed group that protects his illegal activities.

"They are the ones who kill those pushers with whom he delivered the shabu for sale that cannot remit to Kerwin their sales of illegal drugs," Espinosa said.

Espinosa alleged in his affidavit that Kerwin allegedly sourced firearms from a certain Victor Espina, who's related to a police official.

"Actually I was the one who procured long firearms and short firearms from Victor Espina," Espinosa said.

Espinosa, 54, was killed inside his cell in the Baybay City Sub-Provincial Jail on Saturday after fighting it out with policemen who were about to serve a search warrant for violation of Republic Act 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act.

Following Espinosa's death, questions swirled about why a search warrant had to be served on someone who is already behind bars and without proper coordination with jail guards.

The hard drive containing the CCTV footage inside the cell is also missing.

Both the Philippine National Police and National Bureau of Investigation are now looking into the bloody search operation, which also killed another inmate Raul Yap. —with gallery by Jannielyn Ann Bigtas/NB, GMA News

- See more at: http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/587853/news/nation/espinosa-affidavit-tags-de-lima-49-others-as-kerwin-s-coddlers#sthash.3mjKme2w.dpuf

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