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LTO steps up campaign vs fixers, red tape

December 9, 2022 Jun I. Legaspi 757 views

THE Land Transportation Office (LTO) scored “another victory” in its strengthened campaign against individuals and groups engaged in “fixing” and red tape activities at the agency.

“We will continue to step on the pedal, so to speak, with regard to our anti-fixing and anti-red tape activities throughout the country. I said I will deal with fixers without letup, with the help of our regional offices to help stamp them out from the LTO’s grounds. We have no room for them there,” LTO Chief Assistant Secretary Jose Arturo “Jay Art” Tugade said in a statement.

Just recently, a complaint about “fixing” activities at the LTO field offices in Bocaue and Sta. Maria in Bulacan was received by LTO Region 3.

Acting on the complaint, LTO Region 3 Regional Director Eduardo de Guzman ordered a simultaneous entrapment operation on the two field offices on December 7, 2022, to rid the region of fixers in line with the LTO Chief’s directive.

An LTO Bulacan employee, who acted as a poseur-client, transacted with the four fixers who promised immediate processing of LTO transactions in exchange for a fee.

Upon handing the agreed amount to the fixers, operatives from the LTO Region 3, with the assistance of police personnel from the Police Regional Office 3 (PRO 3) and Bulacan Provincial Police Office (PPO) of the Philippine National Police (PNP), immediately arrested the four individuals, all of whom are residents of Bulacan.

In Camarines Sur, meanwhile, a 37-year-old suspect was arrested based on a complaint alleging that the suspect is a “fixer” operating near the LTO Naga District Office. The suspect allegedly offered to process the license of the complainant’s in-law in exchange for money.

Following the LTO Chief’s order against fixers, LTO Region 5 Regional Director Francisco Ranches, Jr. acted on the complaint and immediately sought the assistance of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) in Camarines Sur and Naga City Police Office to launch an entrapment operation that led to the arrest of the suspect.

The suspects in the two incidents are now under investigation to determine if they have cohorts in the LTO offices where they were arrested, while criminal charges have also been filed against them.

“We will continue the campaign against fixers until they are fully eradicated. This is why I continue to strongly urge the transacting public, our customers, to please refrain from transacting with fixers. Help us get rid of them by not transacting with them anymore so that our government won’t be deprived of much-needed revenue. You are assured that your transaction is legal, and your hard-earned money is safe,” said Tugade.