Ex-BuCor OIC Rafael Ragos in drug raps surrenders to NBI

MANILA, Philippines -  Former Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) officer-in-charge Rafael Ragos, a co-accused of Sen. Leila de Lima in the drug charges filed by the Department of Justice, surrendered to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) yesterday.
Rafael Ragos

Ragos turned himself in three days after the Muntinlupa City Regional Trial Court (RTC) issued the arrest warrants against him, De Lima and her former driver and lover Ronnie Dayan.

NBI Director Dante Gierran said Ragos surfaced at the bureau’s main office in Manila before noon. Journalists were not allowed to cover his surrender.

Ragos, who served as NBI deputy director, would remain under the custody of the bureau until the Muntinlupa RTC Branch 204 issues a commitment order on where he would be detained.

De Lima and Dayan were arrested separately last Friday. The senator is now detained at the Philippine National Police custodial center while Dayan is at the Muntinlupa City Jail.

Ragos was indicted by the DOJ in the first of three cases against De Lima and Dayan involving the sale and trading of illegal drugs and liability of government officials under Republic Act 9165, the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act.

A known close friend of De Lima, Ragos testified against the senator during the House of Representatives’ investigation into drug trafficking operations in the New Bilibid Prison in October last year.

In his testimony, Ragos confessed that he delivered millions of pesos on different occasions to the house of De Lima upon instructions of Dayan.

Ragos said he received the amounts from a certain Jorge Goff, Jovencio Ablan Jr. and a relative of one German Agojo, which he turned over to Dayan in De Lima’s Parañaque residence.

He was earlier eyed as prosecution witness by the DOJ. But unlike the high-profile inmates who testified against the senator, he was included among the accused in the cases filed in court.

It was not clear if the DOJ would utilize him as state witness in the cases during trial.

In issuing arrest warrant, Muntinlupa RTC Branch 204 Judge Juanita Guerrero cited the existence of probable cause in the cases filed by the DOJ last Feb. 17.

The court issued the warrants even after De Lima filed a motion seeking the dismissal of the charges against her and deferment of issuance of arrest order pending judicial determination of probable cause.

The senator also questioned the DOJ’s jurisdiction over the cases, saying these should have been brought before the Office of the Ombudsman.

De Lima is facing two other counts of drug charges before RTC Branch 205 under Judge Amelia Fabros-Corpuz and Branch 206 under Judge Patria Manalastas-de Leon.

De Lima is joined by her nephew, Jose Adrian Dera, in the second count in Branch 205.

The third count in Branch 206 included former Bureau of Corrections chief Franklin Bucayu, his alleged bagman Wilfredo Elli, high-profile inmate Jaybee Sebastian, De Lima’s former bodyguard Joenel Sanchez, Dayan and Dera also as accused.

[source] - Rappler

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