A whole Philippine city police force has been sacked after some of its members were accused of the killings of three teenagers, while others were apparently caught on security cameras burgling a house.
The 1,200-strong Caloocan force would be sent home in stages, said Manila police chief Oscar Albayalde. The officers would do 45 days of retraining after which those facing no charges can be transferred to other stations.
The justice department has started an investigation into murder and torture allegations against four Caloocan police officers for killing of 17-year-old Kian delos Santos during a drugs raid in August.
The parents of Carl Angelo Arnaiz, 19, and Reynaldo de Guzman, 14, have filed allegations of murder, torture and planting evidence against two Caloocan officers.
Last week, CCTV video emerged appearing to show 13 police officers stealing from a house during a drugs raid.
Police said the student, Delos Santos, was a drug dealer who fired at officers during a raid, but witnesses claimed he was shot dead as he begged for his life.
Video showed two police officers dragging Delos Santos away shortly before shots were heard he was found shot in the head with a firearm in his left hand, although he was right-handed.
Meanwhile, the Philippines’ defence minister has said President Rodrigo Duterte has considered enforcing martial rule over fears of planned left-wing protests but claims the prospect of an order was “very remote”.
Delfin Lorenzana said the populist president had mulled extending martial law beyond the southern, Muslim-dominated island of Mindanao.
Lorenzana said leftist protests planned nationwide were unlikely to be on a significant scale. One protest is planned for next Thursday to mark the 45th anniversary of the 1972 martial law declaration by former dictator Ferdinand Marcos that led to intense repression.
Duterte declared martial law in Mindanao in May to deal with the siege by Islamist militants in Marawi in an effort to prevent similar uprisings elsewhere on the archipelago’s second-largest island.
At least 860 people, including more than 600 insurgents, have reportedly been killed in Marawi, which has been largely destroyed.
A final assault with air strikes is currently being carried out to defeat the remaining militants in Marawi.
Caloocan’s police are being sacked. Picture credit: Wikimedia