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April 30, 2022

MMDA Personnel Nabbed for Extortion, Coercion

A personnel of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority was arrested in an entrapment operation conducted by the Highway Patrol Group – Special Operations Division on Friday night in Pasig City.

Police authorities nabbed the suspect identified as MMDA traffic aide Jomar Palata, 40, currently assigned at the MMDA’s Office of the Assistant General Manager for Operations.

In a police report, a lady complainant sought police assistance after the suspect, who identified himself as a law enforcement personnel of the Land Transportation Office (LTO), tried to extort money from her.

The victim said that on April 28, Palata threatened her that he will apprehend all the commuter vans she owned if she will refuse to give bribe money amounting to P100,000.

MMDA Chairman Romando Artes said the MMDA does not tolerate such errant activities done by any of its personnel.

He encouraged all victims of extortion and coercion and those giving payola to report such illegal activities.

“The MMDA is serious in cleaning its ranks of any wrongdoings as we are likewise very firm in keeping the agency corruption-free,” Artes said.

“Anyone who was victimized by erring personnel is encouraged to lodge a complaint in our office for investigation. Proven guilty, the MMDA will not be gentle in meting out punishments for these individuals,” he added.

The Chairman emphasized that legitimate apprehensions coming from the MMDA would have to be settled at its Redemption Center in Makati or in authorized online payment channels such as Landbank and Bayad.

Palata is currently detained and is facing robbery extortion, grave coercion, and usurpation of authority charges.

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