Police arrest ex-convict and two cohorts with fake gold bars in Cebu City

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fake gold bars

An ex-convict and his two cohorts were arrested inside a pension house on Tuesday after police were called to the scene when the men refused to pay their hotel bill.

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The three men would have never been noticed if it weren’t for the West View Homes Pension House calling the police after the men did not pay for their 3-day stay.

Arrested were 52-year-old Romeo Canoy Malisi, 43-year-old Edgar Sab-Puan and 44-year-old Robert Payan.

Police noted that “We went there because the pension house informed us they have clients who refused to pay the dues then we saw the gold bar in the room,” said the chief of the City Intelligence Branch.

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Malasi confessed to the police that the gold bars were in fact ‘fake’ – he denied any wrongdoing saying that his customers know the bars are not real.

“We are not swindlers. Our customers are the swindlers,” said Malasi.

Malasi said they sold numerous fake bars for 1-million pesos each – “If we were innocent, you’d wonder why the gold bar is that cheap. Unless, you plan to pass it off as real and sell it,” said Malasi.

Sab-Puan is from Malago, Davao City, while Payan is from Lawis, Digos City – the two are said to have flown to Cebu City to sell the fake gold bars. Police say that Malasi is also originally from Davao City as well.

The dispute with the hotel bill comes after a buyer for the fake gold bars did not show up – the men then did not have enough money to pay for their stay in the Cebu pension house.

In a press conference with police Malasi poured a liquid solution onto the top of one of the gold bars – a portion of the bar indicated it was in fact authentic – however only the bar’s outer surface has a small amount of real gold, not the interior.
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Sab-Puan and Payan are actual gold miners in the region of Davao City, according to police – while Malasi was a former aide to Babag Barangay Captain Cesar Dolorito.
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Police say that Malasi spent 10-years behind bars for his part in a kidnapping case – he was confined to the Calamba City Jail in Laguna.
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All three men will now face the charge of estafa (fraud) against them.
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