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Metro Manila Jan-March crime rate down 10% - NCRPO

April 24, 2008 11:38am
MANILA, Philippines - Crime rate in Metro Manila during the first three months of the year declined, the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) said Thursday.

This, even as the NCRPO admitted that it has fewer policemen than needed to secure the metropolis.

In an interview, NCRPO chief Dir. Geary Barias said that they were able to record a 10.6-percent decrease in the crime rate compared to the same period last year.

"From January to March, we were able to record a decrease in the crime rate compared to last year," Barias said in Filipino.

The police officer also noted the similar trend in rate of crimes against property, as they recorded a 13-percent decrease.

Barias said most of the crimes committed during the first three months of the year were robbery incidents, including those that targeted customers of commercial banks in Metro Manila.

"Naging problema natin ang panghohold-up sa kliyente ng bangko after withdrawal (One of our main problems during the first quarter was the robbery involving a bank client who had just withdrawn)," Barias said.

However, Barias said they have been working double time to put a stamp on bank-related robberies in Metro Manila.

"Napahinto natin ang bank robberies at napahinto rin natin ang pambibiktima sa mga kliyente na nagwi-withdraw sa bangko (We were able to curb bank robberies and stop clients from becoming victims)," he said.

Barias took pride at the first quarter crime rate figures as he underscored the need to recruit more policemen for the growing population in the country's capital.

He said that the police to population ratio in Metro Manila currently stands at one policeman for every 750 civilians, when the ideal policeman-civilian ratio should be 1:500.

Barias' report came a day after six suspected members of the robbery group Waray-Waray were shot dead in an alleged shootout with members of the Manila Police District. Two civilians who were caught in the crossfire were also killed while another civilian was wounded. - Mark Merueñas, GMANews.TV
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