Justice Secretary Leila de Lima confirmed on Friday that Undersecretary Francisco Baraan III, who is investigating the alleged VIP treatment given to some convicts, had found irregularities in ‘emergency referrals’ which were issued without notifying and securing first clearance from the Department of Justice (DOJ).
DOJ has recommended the relief of some doctors inside the New Bilibid Prisons (NBP) in Muntinlupa following questionable referrals for giving high profile inmates a hospital treatment outside prison walls.
According to De Lima, there is a recommendation in Baraan’s initial report to relieve doctors in the NBP hospital, about a couple of them responsible for issuing so-called emergency referrals. Moreover, Baraan believed that there was really no emergency, therefore permission should have been sought.
On May 27, Herbert Colangco aka “Ampang”, a leader of the bank robbery gang responsible for the heists in Pampanga and Quezon City in 2003 and in Parañaque in 2005, was brought to Asian Hospital and Medical Center in Alabang.
Then on May 13, Amin Boratong was taken to Medical City due to recurring coronary disease and a liver ailment. He is the operator of the shabu tiangge or what they call as drug flea market.
Moreover, another convicted drug lord, Ricardo Camata, was taken to the Metropolitan Hospital in Manila due to lung ailment. He is the commander of the SigueSigue Sputnik gang.
Camera security footage cited that Baraan said Camata was allowed to receive female visitors and use his cell phone during his stay at the hospital.
According to De Lima, the DOJ will dig deeper into the private hospitalization of high profile inmates.
-DONNA ABIGAIL L. BULA
LNU ABCom Intern