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New coup plot ‘nipped in the bud’–PNP chief

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By Joel Guinto
First Posted 11:31:00 07/07/2008

MANILA, Philippines — The alleged fresh coup plot has been “nipped in the bud” with the arrests of five suspects last week, but police would still be running after retired military and police colonels involved in the supposedly botched uprising, Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Director General Avelino Razon Jr. said.

Razon said follow-up operations were aimed at “accounting for other participants” in the alleged power grab attempt, supposedly led by human rights lawyer Homobono Adaza, Army Lieutenant Colonel Oscarlito Mapalo, retired Colonels Ernie Amboy and Cesar dela Peña, and police Superintendent Rafael Cardeño.

The five were charged with proposal to commit coup d’etat before the Quezon City regional trial court on Friday.

“I think hindi na [not anymore] We were able to nip it in the bud so to speak, but we are following up leads to ascertain who else is involved in this plot,” Razon told reporters at the Camp Crame national police headquarters Monday.

“We could sleep soundly knowing that the PNP is on the job 24/7, 365 days a year,” he added.

Asked about the progress of the follow-up pursuit, Razon said: “We have several names that came up. The important thing is there are no active police and military personnel.”

Pressed if those involved were retired officers, Razon answered in the affirmative, and said they held the rank of colonel in the military and the equivalent rank of superintendent in the police force.

Adaza, Amboy, and Dela Peña are out on bail while Mapalo was placed under military custody, where he is facing court martial charges. Cardeño remains in detention on murder charges over the 2001 killing of Young Officers Union (YOU) spokesman Baron Cervantes.

Asked if there were bigger personalities involved in the alleged plot, aside from Adaza’s group, Razon said: “Wala na [No more]. I think it’s just a small group and it’s a mater of accounting for the other participants.”

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Written by joelguinto

MonUTC2008-07-07T04:33:37+00:00UTC07bUTCMon, 07 Jul 2008 04:33:37 +0000 22, 2006 at 12:45 am07

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