Racketeers posing as firemen arrested

LINGAYEN — Racketeering by criminal syndicates is boundless.

The latest discovered racket is that of a group posing as personnel of the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) purportedly to conduct a survey in order to gain entry in houses ostensibly to sell LPG devices.

BFP Lingayen and the town police warned the public against the modus operandi of the group of suspects, some of whom were arrested.

SFO2 Inri Soriano, officer-in-charge at the BFP Lingayen, said they intercepted the suspects after they received calls from residents verifying the identities of personnel authorized to conduct survey on circuit breakers inside their houses.

The suspects were intercepted and arrested as they were entering a house in Barangay Ramos East.

Arrested were Eugene Valdez of Tombor Malasiqui, Deborah Suarez of San Vicente Calasiao, Luther Buhian of Sta. Maria and Raised Rosalita of Parongking Calasiao, who identified as BFP personnel authorized to sell LPG safety devices.

SFO1 Soriano said, the suspects are not connected, authorized and accredited agents of BFP.

“They could not present an inspection order and certificate of competency although they showed a DTI permit and a fire certificate but these did not have the name of their establishment and fire certificates are issued after an inspection and and not as an authority to sell,” Soriano said.

In the investigation, the suspects admitted that they use BFP as a strategy to get the trust of their prospected victims so they can enter their houses.

The police warned that the ruse of criminals to represent government agencies is rampant and unsuspecting victims ended up being robbed inside their homes. (Nora Dominguez)