Saturday 26 May, 2018
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CA affirms Customs police exec’s suspension over SALN disrepancy

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The Court of Appeals (CA) has affirmed the Ombudsman’s 1-month suspension of a Bureau of Customs (BoC) police executive over his belated declaration of his Ilocos Norte property in his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN).

In a recent 8-page decision, the CA 2nd Division denied the appeal of Rogelio Rabanal, the deputy district commander of the Customs Police District-Enforcement and Security Service at the Port of Batangas.

The CA sustained the Ombudsman’s April 26, 2016 decision finding Rabanal guilty of the administrative offense of simple misconduct.

Rabanal only declared his ownership of a Batac City lot in his SALNs from 2003 onwards, despite the fact that the deed of sale was executed in 1998 and a title was issued in his name in 2000. He claimed he only knew in 2003 that his possession of the property took effect.

But, the CA said this reasoning would not exonerate Rabanal “as under our legal system ignorance of the law excuses no one from compliance therewith.”

“Such discrepancies in the statement of Rogelio’s assets are certainly the result of his inattention which is contrary to what is required of a government employee… to declare a true, detailed and sworn SALN,” read the decision penned by Associate Justice Zenaida Galapate-Laguilles.

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