WHAT DID they talk about? What confidential information did Ormoc’s new city administrator gather from an alleged “drug lord” that she boldly told businessmen “We have a drug lord at the jail here … the discussion was top secret but in the next few days … we hope to have caught the big drug dealers in the city” already.
One day after Atty. Irene Resurreccion, new city administrator, told a group of businessmen that she had a talk with the alleged “drug lord” said to be operating his business from behind the Ormoc City Jail walls, the same posts bail of P 200,000.00 in cold cash for his temporary liberty.
On July 31, 2013, Roland Espinoza y Rosal alias “Kerwin” or “Jake Pacaña” posted a P 200,000.00 cash bail at the Office of the Clerk of Court here, accompanied by relatives, friends and supporters.
This was two days after a suspected small-time drug pusher interviewed by Power FM radio claimed she sourced drugs from the city jail and was merely a courier. One Fe de Guzman was caught in a buy-bust operation at Brgy. Mas-in last July 26. Confiscated from her were four sachets of shabu, P 500 marked money used in the buy bust and nine pieces rolled tin foil.
Sources at the court described Espinoza’s posting bail as “bibo”, “murag Presidente o artista kaha ang mianhi sa korte”, with hundreds of people in expensive vehicles, habal-habals and motorcycles accompanying him as he “walked free”.
Another source at the Court said he interpreted the suspect’s “show of force” as a “dirty finger up the face of law enforcers” showing them that he can do what he wants and pleases. He was also flaunting his money to them by posting cash bail, an amount that an ordinary, law-abiding citizen cannot cough up anytime.
The suspect was detained at the Ormoc City Jail since his arrest on May 19, 2011 or two years and two months. He was arrested for illegal possession of firearms and for another charge of illegal possession of shabu. He could have posted bail to both charges from the very start.
However, instead of posting bail, the suspect opted to be detained at the Ormoc City Jail. Stories thereafter began spreading that he continued to operate his business from behind the walls. There were also allegations that he was free to go out as pleased.
Court records show that he had been allowed to leave the jail on at least two occasions – his grandmother’s burial and his daughter’s baptism where he was not only allowed to attend the rites but the reception, too, until 5:00 in the afternoon, with jail guards escorting him.
Aside from the illegal possession of firearms and drugs that he is facing, Espinoza was also tagged in a case of frustrated murder filed against him by former barangay chairman Andres “Junjun” Tortugo.
The former barangay chairman tagged Espinoza as the gunman who tried to kill him at the confines of his own bathroom in 2011. A policeman, one PO2 Villamor was present when it happened but did nothing to stop the crime. The complaint has since been dismissed, sources at the Regional Trial Court Branch 12 said.
After the complaint was filed in Court, Tortugo did not appear to testify against the suspect anymore. Tortugo, in an interview while he was confined after the shooting, said he owed Espinoza P 300,000 eliciting his ire.
Tortugo, who had a longish confinement, would spend time with his shooter in the same hospital after Espinoza was also confined, also for gunshot wounds. The suspect was checked in at Dave’s Inn here when an unknown assailant shot him at his rented room. It was there that police discovered a firearm and sachets of shabu, leading to his arrest and subsequent detention at the City Jail here.
The two were confined at the OSPA-Farmers Medical Center. Hospital administration put Tortugo on the right wing and Espinoza on the left wing, his room just in front where Legacy’s Celso delos Angeles was also confined.
The suspect’s detention at the City Jail here thwarted attempts of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency in Cebu City, where he was reportedly wanted, to arrest him.
According to a certificate of detention issued by Ormoc jail warden Joseph Y. Nuñez, the suspect is also detained at the Ormoc Jail for drug trafficking filed against him at the RTC Branch 15 in Cebu City, docketed under Criminal Case No. CBU- 91-986.
There was no document at the Court here to show the status of the drug trafficking case filed against Espinoza in Cebu, whether it has been dismissed already.