PNP chief denies authenticity of published Arroyo mug shots

PNP chief denies authenticity of published Arroyo mug shots | pinas balita
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Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Nicanor Bartolome on Tuesday categorically denied the authenticity of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s mug shots circulating online and published by a newspaper.

"I would like to state for the record that the published pictures are not the authentic mug shot photos of Rep. Gloria Arroyo," Bartolome told reporters.

Bartolome said he had instructed police authorities who took the mug shots to submit the official mug shots only to the Pasay court where Mrs. Arroyo’s case was filed.

He also noted discrepancies with the caption of the official mug shots and the published versions.

The Philippine Daily Inquirer on Tuesday published Mrs. Arroyo’s purported mug shots as its banner photos, saying the images "did not come from the Pasay City Regional Trial Court (RTC) which has refused to release the police photos."
The broadsheet said the mug shots came from sources "who requested anonymity." A similar version of the photos is published on the website

Earlier in the day, Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo said the published mug shots of the former President were not real.
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Bartolome also clarified statements earlier made by one of Mrs. Arroyo’s arresting officers, Senior Superintendent James Bucayu, who supposedly confirmed the authenticity of the leaked mug shots.

"He [Bucayu] only mentioned that it appeared to be similar," he said.

He added that he has already designated Senior Superintendent Jigs Coronel to act as the official spokesperson on the matter.

The PNP chief likewise said that authorities are still tracking down the source of the leaked photos, and that they will release an official statement once there are developments.
Early Tuesday, an Agence France-Presse article quoted one of Mrs. Arroyo’s lawyers, Ferdinand Topacio, as expressing outrage that the former Philippine leader's mug shots were leaked to the media.
"The former president does not deserve this and neither should an ordinary person be subjected to this because everyone is entitled to a presumption of innocence," Topacio said.
"Every person should be treated with dignity, be they former presidents or ordinary laborers," he explained.
Mrs. Arroyo is currently under police custody at the St. Luke’s Medical Center in Taguig City after the Commission on Elections (Comelec) sued her for electoral sabotage. — RSJ, GMA News

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