Ombudsman clears Paolo Duterte, Mans Carpio in smuggling case; wants Faeldon charged

  • The Ombudsman investigators has dismissed the charges against Paolo Duterte and Mans Carpio
  • However, it recommended the filing of charges against Faeldon and several others
  • Faeldon maintained his innocence; saying he just did his job at the BOC

MANILA, Philippines – The Ombudsman investigators has dropped the charges against former Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte and Atty. Manases Carpio in connection with the P6.4-B narcotics smuggling case, while at the same time they recommended the filing of cases against ex-Customs chief Nicanor Faeldon and several others.

A report of the Special Panel of Fact-Finding Investigators of the anti-graft body said there is not enough evidence against Duterte and Carpio, relatives of the President, to implicate them in the alleged smuggling of narcotics from China found in a Valenzuela warehouse.

On the other hand, the investigators recommended the filing of criminal and administrative charges against Faeldon and other former BOC officials including Milo Maestrecampo, Larribert Hilario, Mary Grace Tecson-Malabed.

Also, grave misconduct charges are recommended to file against Joel Pinawin and Oliver Valiente; while Customs Director Neil Anthony Estrella will be investigated for usurpation of official functions, and violation of Section 3(a) of the graft law or influencing another public official to violate the law along with Faeldon.

“The BOC later discovered and seized the [narcotics] but the manner through which the discovery and seizure were made leaves much to be desired,” said the panel’s report.

“Evidence suggests that numerous laws and administrative issuances pertaining to the proper search, seizure, handling and controlled delivery of [narcotics] were violated by the public officers,” it added.

In a statement, Faeldon maintained his innocence; saying he believes no charges will be filed against him since he just did his job.

The former Customs chief, now serving as deputy administrator at the Office of Civil Defense (OCD), insisted that while the shipment managed to slip past one port, they were able to intercept them.

“There’s no crime committed and we have nothing to defend. We just go there and tell the truth that’s all we need to do,” Faeldon said in an interview with CNN Philippines.