The Freeman

Man arrested in Cebu City with guns, sample ballots

- Iris Hazel M. Mascardo Staff Member

The City Mobile Force Company (CMFC) of the Cebu City Police Office arrested a man with two guns and sample ballots at a checkpoint of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in the mountain barangay of Lusaran late night on Saturday, May 7.

"During the conduct of checkpoint­s, duna tay nasita, around 11:45 p.m. kagabii (Saturday)," Parilla said.

CMFC officer-in-charge, Lt. Colonel Wilbert Parilla, said the guns had live ammunition and two of 11 sample ballots had P100 bills stapled to each.

The suspect was identified as Jerwin Cortes Laguna, 25, a resident of Barangay Ginatilan in Balamban.

He was driving a motorcycle when arrested at the checkpoint.

He is facing charges for violating the Comelec gun ban and Presidenti­al Decree 247 or the law on prohibitin­g and penalizing defacement, mutilation, tearing, burning or destructio­n of Central Bank notes and coins.

"So, usa sa elemento ani, nga bisan kung og pag-staple ug paggamit og adhesive nga ibutang sa usa ka banknote, that's considered a violation of PD 247 so mao ni atong i-file nga kaso," Parilla said.

Parilla said Laguna refused to comment on his arrest but police learned a mastermind is behind his ‘operation,’ something that is the subject of verificati­on.

"We received informatio­n nga naa say nagkupot aning mga bataa dira sa mountain barangays," Parilla said.

As far as the sample ballots with money are concerned, Parilla said the incident could be considered vote buying if the ballots had been distribute­d. Also, it is possible that that Laguna may have just received the sample ballots himself.

"Dili nato ma-rule out kung sya ba ang mamalit or sya ba ang napalit," he said.

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