...as PNP official mulls charges vs. kids’ parents

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Monday, March 30, 2015

THE parents of five boys who were caught in a pot session with adults may be held liable under the law, a police official said.

Insp. Arieza Otida, Cebu City Police Office (CCPO)-Women and Children's Protection Desk, said they are mulling charges against the parents of five boys, aged 9 to 14.

The minors were rescued by operatives of the CCPO-City Intelligence Branch (CIB) inside a drug den in Barangay Duljo Fatima last Friday.


In a phone interview with Sun.Star Cebu yesterday afternoon, Otida said they still have to interview the boys' parents to know whether they neglected their children to work and engage in illicit activities.

But the parents were already called to a case conference yesterday with social workers to discuss the intervention program that both the parents and children will be made to undergo.

They children were neglected, said Ester Concha of the Cebu City’s Department of Social Welfare Services (DSWS)

If no case will be filed, Otida said that the parents will be included in the intervention program of the DSWS.

Neglecting a child is a form of abuse, said Otida.

After the case conference yesterday, the children were turned over to the DSWS while the intervention program is being finalized.

Children in the Philippines are protected by Republic Act (RA) 7610, or the Special Protection of Children against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act.

The police are also planning on filing charges against Janet Dimon, the alleged drug den's caretaker, and her companions, in relation to RA 7610.

“Operating a drug den is already illegal and what makes it worse is they allow minors (to sniff inside),” she said.

Dimon’s alleged fellow caretaker, Josefa Tabasa and Beryl Loren Pane, and the den's guard Sally Mangolori were also caught.

Her arrest came a day after the graduation of her 16-year-old daughter from high school.

Seven junkies were also arrested by operatives of Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency 7.

Confiscated from Dimon's possession were 253 small sachets of shabu worth P80,000, a .22 caliber revolver with three bullets, and P530 cash.

Illegal gambling machines were also seized from the den.

Dimon was under surveillance for two weeks before the operation.

The CIB rescued the minors, ages 9, 10, 11, 13 and 14. They sell newspapers in downtown Cebu City and are school dropouts.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 31, 2015.

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