AR De La Serna dragged into Harry Roque’s alleged POGO links

Who is AR De La Serna, the man dragged into Harry Roque’s alleged POGO links?

/ 09:05 PM June 17, 2024

Who is AR De La Serna, the man dragged into Harry Roque’s alleged POGO links?

AR De La Serna’s profile picture at the Mister Supranational website/MISTER SUPRANATIONAL

Updated July 18, 2024, 12:30 P.M.

When former presidential spokesperson Harry Roque’s name got dragged in the government’s ongoing crackdown of POGO (Philippine off-shore gaming operations) hubs operated by Chinese high-rollers in the country, another name surfaced during the investigation: his former executive assistant Alberto Rodulfo “AR” De La Serna.


Recovered by the Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Commission (PAOCC) at the hub at the Lucky South 99 compound in Porac, Pampanga, was De La Serna’s appointment papers as Executive Assistant III under what used to be Roque’s office as the Palace’s mouthpiece.


De La Serna was a former male pageant contestant who first competed at the 2015 Misters of Filipinas pageant. He later went on to become the Philippines’ representative in the first-ever staging of the Mister Supranational competition in Poland in 2016.

This is not the first time that De La Serna’s link to Roque was made known to the public. He was also seen in some of the photographs of the former official and reportedly accompanied him in some of his previous foreign trips.

READ: Alethea Ambrosio off to Poland for Miss Supranational 2024 pageant

Along with De La Serna’s appointment papers dated Oct. 5, 2021, also retrieved from the POGO hub was an affidavit of support from Roque himself, where former President Rodrigo Duterte’s spokesperson declared that he will take full responsibility for all the financial support that his assistant will be requiring for the duration of a trip to Poland, Ukraine, and Italy in October 2023.

“I am financially capable and willing to cover all expenses related to De La Serna’s travel, including, but not limited to, transportation, accommodation, meals, medical expenses, and any other necessary costs,” the affidavit signed by Roque stated. The former official said he was invited to Europe as a resource person in a forum on the peace process in Ukraine, and will need a travel companion “since I am diabetic, with coronary stent and suffering from acute spinal stenosis.”

In coming to his own defense, Roque insisted in an interview with SMNI News that his then ailing health had required him to bring a companion to his travels abroad.


“Yan po ay dating tao ko pa, at syempre matagal ko na syang di ko tao. Dala-dala lang yung mga records. Ang balita ko po ay nakikitira dahil bumalik po sa eskwelahan yan. Ang alam ko po ay panandalian ang pag stay nya doon, at nakalipat na naman sya kaya lang may mga gamit pa na naiwan doon. Pero nag conclusion na naman ang ating kapulisan, ‘nothing criminal po, nothing suspicious,'” he said.

But Roque’s decision to bring de la Serna to his travels are being questioned by netizens on social media.

Advocacy group IMPACT Leadership further posted on its X a copy of De La Serna’s appointment paper as Roque’s executive assistant, as well as an affidavit of support which the former official signed, as recovered during the Lucky South 99 raid.

De la Serna has yet to comment on the matter.

Degree holder, male model

De La Serna holds a Business Administration degree from the Holy Name University in Tagbilaran City. He did not win in his first try at the Misters of Filipinas contest in 2015, and only managed a Top 10 finish in a field of 30 contestants. But he was proclaimed as Mister Photogenic and Mister Esplanade in the male tilt that year.

The national competition was held a year after cop Neil Perez brought home the Mister International title, which generated a lot of interest in male pageantry in the country. The Misters of Filipinas pageant sent the police officer to the global tilt.

De La Serna assumed the second runner-up spot when Misters of Filipinas first runner-up Don MacGyver Cochico, another cop, was appointed as Manhunt International Philippines by the national pageant organization. Kevin Fichera, who was originally proclaimed second runner-up, was elevated as first runner-up that year.

The Boholano contender rescinded his runner-up spot to try out anew in the Misters of Filipinas pageant the next year, a move that turned out to be more fruitful as he bagged one of the six prizes at stake that year, the Mister Supranational Philippines title.

At the inaugural staging of the Mister Supranational pageant in Poland in 2016, De La Serna finished in the Top 20. The Philippine franchise for the international male competition has since changed hands. It was handled briefly by the Miss World Philippines organization, but now the license belongs to Empire Philippines, organizer of the Mister Pilipinas Worldwide search and the Miss Universe Philippines and The Miss Philippines brands.

TAGS: Harry Roque, Misters of Filipinas

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