Posted on November 19, 2016
MR. ESPINOSA arrived at 3:41 a.m., and at Terminal 2 of the NInoy Aquino International Airport, he was met by Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Director-General Ronald “Bato” M. dela Rosa and members of the Anti-Illegal Drugs Group (AIDG) of the PNP.
He was then brought to the PNP headquarters in Camp Crame where, two hours later, he was presented in a press briefing mostly presided over by the PNP chief.
PNP Chief Director-General Ronald “Bato” M. dela Rosa personally picked up Mr. Espinosa at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 2, Pasay City. He later presented the alleged drug lord to the media at the PNP Headquarters in Crame at around 5:30 A.M, saying:
“Andito na si Kerwin, buhay ha [Kerwin is now here, alive, huh?]” Mr. dela Rosa said.
Mr. Espinosa had earlier expressed fear for his life and that of his family, following the controversial killing of his father, Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr., at the sub-provincial jail of Baybay City in the hands of members of the Criminal Investigation and Detention Group (CIDG)-Region 8.
Mr. dela Rosa for his part emphasized that there was no threat on Mr. Espinosa’s life, adding “Naniguro lang tayo [We’re just making sure]” regarding the tight security for Mr. Espinosa.
Mr. Espinosa for his part said: “Ngayon, wala na akong takot sa pulis. Nakita ko yung kanilang pag-safety sa akin mula sa pagkuha sa akin sa Abu Dhabi hanggang dito sa Crame, na-feel ko yung safety ko na safe na ako.” (I have no fear for the police now. I saw their efforts to secure me from Abu Dhabi until here in Crame, I feel I am safe.)
Camp Crame had been placed on heightened-alert status since Thursday night, Nov. 17, following President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s departure for Peru to attend the APEC Summit.
Mr. dela Rosa, addressing the briefing, called Mr. Espinosa “the missing link” in the government’s inquiry and crackdown on the drug trade, adding: “Marami siyang mai-co-connect and, well, sinabi naman niya sa akin, since namatay na ‘yung father, he is willing to tell all.” (He can establish the connections and, well, he told me, since his father is dead, he is willing to tell all.)
“He is going to tell everything that he knows regarding the illegal drug trade na kung saan siya na-involve [where he is involved].”
Mr. dela Rosa did most of the talking in response to questions by the media, as he also noted that most of their questions will be answered by an affidavit that Mr. Espinosa will submit soon.
Mr. Espinosa was allowed to make a statement or two addressed to Mr. Duterte: “Humihiling ako ng tawad kung ano yung mga nagawa ko dati at sana bigyan niya ako ng pagkakataon magbagong buhay.” (I ask for forgiveness for whatever I did before and I wish he would give me the opportunity to change my life.)
“At itong sitwasyon ko ngayon na wala na yung papa ko, maasahan niya na lahat ng involved sa drug trade na nalalaman ko, lalabas yan lahat, (And in this situation wherein I don’t have my papa, he [Mr. Duterte] can be assured that everyone involved in the drug trade whom I know, that will all come out.)
Mr. Espinosa explained why he left the country: “Hindi ako lumayas na tatalikuran ko yung problema ko dito. Lumayas ako para madala ko sa malayong lugar ‘yung mga anak ko at asawa ko para sila ay maging safe.” (I didn’t leave to run away from my problems. I left to bring my children and my wife as far away as possible so they will be safe.) — KJVP