By Jennifer P. Rendon
Still unidentified robbers carted away an estimated P115,000 in cash from a spa center in City Proper, Iloilo City.
The incident was discovered after Erbi Feramco, owner of Thai Royale Spa located at Gen. Luna St. in Barangay Danao, went to the shop around 7 a.m. Sunday, March 6, 2022.
Feramco, 51, a resident of Barangay Cagbang, Oton, Iloilo, told police investigators that he was supposed to get his vaccination card needed for their travel to Guimaras province.
He did not immediately suspect that a robbery has taken place in his business until he saw that the window at the fire exit was opened.
Feramco then noted that the cabinet drawer was in disarray.
The same drawer also contained the P115,000 cash, the office phone worth P3,000, and a watch on their “lost and found” that went missing.
The suspects also took away the Digital Video Recording (DVR) of the spa’s CCTV cameras.
But the robbers left a laptop untouched.
Major Shella Mae Sangrines, Iloilo City Police Station 1 chief, said the robbers appeared to have detached an exhaust fan from the back window where they entered the spa.
For the suspects to gain access to that area, they must go through the fire exit that separates a school and the building where Thai Royal Spa is located.
“The exhaust hole is very small. Only a man who is slightly built man or a kid could fit into it,” she said.
The suspects also used a chair to scale the exhaust opening.
In exiting the shop, they used the window at the fire exit, Sangrines said.
At the onset, Sangrines opined that the suspects seemed to be familiar with the area.
“Kabisado nila ang lugar. They knew that they could gain entry by passing through the fire wall and seating the exhaust fan,” she said.
The suspects appeared to know where the location of the stolen cash is since they did not rummage through the whole place.
“It’s also a question for us why did the suspects knew that the shop was keeping a big amount of money at that time,” Sangrines said.
The P115,000 was for the employees’ salary, but the management failed to deposit the amount before the weekend.
Sangrines said that robbers were also too clever to take with them the CCTV’s DVR.
She said they are considering all angles, including the possibility that the robbers had “connections” from the inside.
Sangrines said they are also gathering CCTV footages from other establishments.
The supposed CCTV of Barangay Danao facing the area where the suspects could have passed through was not working when the incident happened.