CIDG apologizes to journalist wrongfully arrested in Misamis Oriental; It was a case of mistaken identity, the CIDG says

(Eagle News)–The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group has apologized to Davao-based journalist Margarita Valle for wrongful arrest.

“On behalf of the PNP-CIDG, I want to extend my sincerest apologies for the negative experience that you had with our CIDG personnel from Pagadian City at Laguindingan Airport in the morning of June 9, 2019,”  Col. Tom Tuzon, chief of the CIDG Regional Field Unit 9, said in a statement.

Valle was arrested by CIDG operatives in the Misamis Oriental airport by virtue of warrants of arrest for multiple murder with quadruple frustrated murder and damage to government property issued by a Misamis Occidental Regional Trial Court in December 2011, and by virtue of a warrant for arson released by a Pagadian court in 2006.

But Valle had claimed she was not the person named in the warrants, a fact later acknowledged by a witness to one of the supposed crimes.

Valle was released later in the day.

“We do realize that we should have headed your call regarding your identity from the start and have released you at the airport,” Tuzon said.

He noted that the information “came from  a reliable source from our military counterparts but as investigators, we should have conducted validation prior to the arrest.”

“At CIDG, we pride ourselves for detecting and building an airtight case and the evidence of guilt is established prior to arrest to ensure that we will not punish the wrong person. We sincerely request your understanding since that the information given to our detectives on the ground is already a Warrant of Arrest and that the identity of the person on the warrant is only known to the complainant himself,” he added.