NAGA CITY— Twenty-seven alleged bet collectors of the illegal numbers game ‘jueteng’ were arrested on January 5 at the residence of Barangay Captain Joshua Calleja after they were caught in flagrante delicto during a police intel operation.
These coins and other jueteng paraphernalia were confiscated at the residence of Punong Barangay Joshua Calleja during the raid conducted by the elements of the Naga City Police Office. These will be used as evidence in the case to be lodged against Calleja and 27 other suspects.
The team, led by PCI Gilbert Farinas, Chief Intel of the Naga City Police, arrested the suspects, who were all bearing identification cards signed by the Punong Barangay, which served as proof of their authority to collect the bet for the illegal numbers game.
Not jueteng, but bingo
Brgy. Captain Calleja expressed his dismay over the cuffing of the suspects.
The collectors, he claims, were merely remitting the proceeds of a legitimate bingo game.
"Bingo sa Barangay" he contends is merely a fundraising activity of the barangay, which is intended to raise money to finance the college education of the barangay scholars and the repair of the talipapa.
Out of the proceeds of the lottery, ninety-five percent (95%) goes to the operator or the financier of the game. Five percent (5%) is retained by the barangay, Calleja told the media.
He, however, refused to disclose the operator’s identity.
In support of his claim, he said that the activity bears the imprimatur of the Barangay Council, as evidenced by a Barangay Resolution. Calleja, however, has yet to produce a copy of the document.
Instead of the resolution, he presented to the media a letter signed by him, addressed to Hon. John Bongat.
In the letter, he states that the Sangguniang Barangay has passed a resolution authorizing the holding of fundraising events in conformity with Section 391, Paragraph 11 of the Local Government Code.
He also presented a letter signed by Sangguaniang Panglungsod Secretary Gil de la Torre of the City of Naga.
In the said document, the SP Secretary informs the Brgy. Captain that no permit is required to hold a bingo game since it is a fundraising event.
Letter of Punong Barangay Joshua B. Calleja to Naga City Mayor John G. Bongat
The police, however, are unswayed.
According to them, Calleja and the collectors are clearly engaged in an illegal numbers game.
Per their investigation, bettors are asked to choose a combination of two out of 75 numbers.
The winning combination is determined by a lottery which is held thrice a day in Calleja’s residence.
All these are conducted sans government authority.
Unequivocally, the activity bespeaks of an illegal numbers game or ‘jueteng,’ the police said.
Charges against the Punong Barangay are being prepared.
As of press time, the collared suspects are detained at the Naga City Jail.
Police identified them as follows: 1) Joselito Bisin Alfonso, 49 years old, of Kilometer 6, Pacol, Naga City; 2) Domingo Bañas Namuro Jr., 40 years old, married, of Sta Rosa, Magarao, Camarines Sur; 3) Alan Tompang Butial, 41 years old, of Zone 4, Balatas, Naga City; 4) Wilfredo Ona Banayo Jr., 33 years old, married, of Carolina, Naga City; 5) Rowena Quipayo Reafor, 45 years old, married, of Zone 2, Balatas, Naga City; 6) Ogie Guia Posedio, 44 years old, of Zone 3, Pacol, Naga City; 7) Ramer San Buenaventura Rito, 42 years old, married, of Concepcion Grande, Naga City; 8) Romy Buenvente Nora, 33 years old, of Zone 7, Balatas, Naga City; 9) Roberto Marz Bahilo, 53 years old, of Tagas, Daraga, Albay; 10) Armelo Abunda Abril, 42 years old, married, of Tagas, Daraga, Albay; 11) Rafael Vasquez Villacorta, 46 years old, married, of Magurang, Polangui, Albay; 12) Robert Sabillena Bachencilla, 40 years old, married, of Magurang, Polangui, Albay; 13) Ronald Perez Almario, 45 years old, married, of Pawa Legazpi City; 14) Ingoy Silo Vellez, 42 years old, of Ponso, Polangui, Albay; 15) Gildo Panis Nobleza, 45 years old, married, of Zone 2, Balatas, Naga City; 16) Eduardo Taguilid Efondo, 42 years old, married, of San Felipe, Naga City; 17) Nelson Mercoleta Bona Sr., 47 years old, married, of Zone 3, Pacol, Naga City; 18) Sandy Madar Ador, 25 years old, Sitio Almeda, Pacol, Naga City; 19) Joselito Neo Olabia, 43 years old, married of Km. 6, Pacol, Naga City; 20) Roel Cadores Tod, 53 years old, married, of Zone 7, Tabuco, Naga City; 21) Edwin Namoro Bañas, 38 years old, married, of Zone 5, Brgy. Carolina, Naga City; 22) Pablito Hernandez Ona, 46 years old, married, of Km, 11, Brgy Carolina, Naga City; 23) Abner Clemente Custodio, 55 years old, married, of Brgy. Marupit, Camaligan, Camarines Sur; 24) Nolito Espiritu Novelo, 43 years old, married, of Km. 6, Brgy. Pacol, Naga City; 25) Mark Rey Olarve Chavez, 28 years old, single, of Urban Poor, Brgy. Pacol, Naga City; 26) Bernardo Monteflor Taucar, 43 years old, single, of Km. 11, Brgy Carolina, Naga City; and 27) Roger Godoy Sabater, 38 years old, married, of Zone 3, Brgy. Pacol, Naga City.
Brgy. Capt. Calleja, and the 27 suspects were all charged with violation of Presidential Decree (P.D.) 1602 which prescribes penalties for carrying out illegal gambling activities.
The recommended bail for each suspect is P100,000.