- The DOJ cleared Lt. Col. Ferdinand Marcelino from the illegal drugs and gun ban charges filed against him
- State prosecutors said that the evidences filed against Marcelino and Chinese translator Yan Yi were insufficient
- A DOJ official said that the defendants were able to provide clear statements regarding their presence in a drug laboratory during the raid
The Department of Justice (DOJ) has cleared Marine Lt. Col. Ferdinand Marcelino from the charges filed against him in relation to his supposed violations of the dangerous drugs act and the nationwide election gun ban last January.
In an article written by Mark Merueñas for GMA News Online on June 21, 2016, it was disclosed that Prosecutor General Claro Arellano confirmed that Senior Deputy State Prosecutor Theodore Villanueva and Assistant State Prosecutor Michael John Humarang dismissed the military officer’s cases “for insufficiency of evidence without prejudice to whatever evidence the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) would again submit to corroborate their complaint.”
According to Villanueva, both Marcelino and Chinese translator Yan Yi had prior knowledge of what was to be found inside the raided drug laboratory and that the two were able to present a clear plan with what they would to do with the contents of the facility after seizing them.
Such findings have provided a clearer picture of the defendants’ claim that their presence in the warehouse is part of a legitimate intelligence operation dubbed as “Oplan Moses” which was allegedly sanctioned by the Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Commission (PAOCC) and the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (ISAFP).
However, the Malacanang Palace has denied Marcelino’s statements; saying that there is no ongoing PAOCC operation that involves the officer and that the soldier has no direct involvement with the PDEA at the time of his arrest.