Nursing Review Head Faces Criminal Prosecution

by Joel Roja/Asianjournal.com

MANILA — The Department of Justice has recommended the filing of criminal charges against George Cordero, president of Inress Review Center, for alleged manipulation of the June 2006 nursing licensure examinations.

In a 10-page resolution, Justice Secretary Raul Gonzalez affirmed the findings of the panel of state prosecutors which found probable cause to charge Cordero before the Regional Trial Court of Manila for violation of Section 15 of the Republic Act 8981, also known as the Professional Regulation Commission Modernization Act.

The said provision states that “any person who manipulates or rigs licensure examination results, secretly informs or makes known licensure exam questions prior to the conduct of examination or tampers with the grades in professional licensure exams, shall, upon conviction, be punished…”

The DOJ pointed out that records would readily show that the alleged leakage questions were discovered as coming from Inress. The DOJ noted that there were no evidence showing that the leaked materials came from other review centers such as Gapuz and Pentagon.

The justice secretary, thus, dismissed the charges against Ricarte Gapuz, director of the R.A Gapuz Review Center; Elena Gapuz-Altarejos;, vice president; and Jonna Bucud, drill master.

If found guilty, Cordero may be meted with an imprisonment of not less than six years and one day to not more than 12 years or a fine of not less than P50,000 to not more than P100,000, or both, at the discretion of the court.

The DOJ gave weight to the testimony of witness-reviewee Dennis Alba Bautista, who claimed that he was among those present during a final coaching class at the SM Manila two days before the June 11 and 12, 2006 NLEX.

Bautista also presented as evidence a compact disk which the reviewers listened to during the coaching class, wherein he found that 25 and 90 items in the contested Tests III (Medical-Surgical) and V (Psychiatric Nursing), respectively, were identical to the lectures of Inress.

(www.asianjournal.com)

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