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Lacson bares ‘smoking gun’ to pin Espinosa killers


As the Department of Justice (DoJ)  yesterday summoned  Supt. Melvin Marcos and his team who were involved in the killing of Albuera Mayor Rolando Espinosa while he was in his detention cell, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said evidence exists in support of earlier findings of Senate investigators on the death of  Espinosa Sr. being a premeditated act by operatives from the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) operatives who claimed they were there to serve a search warrant on the mayor  who fought them with a gun.
Lead prober Senator Lacson bared this yesterday following an “executive session” by his committee on public order and dangerous drugs on the issue of the Espinosa killing.
“The smoking gun in the legislative inquiry (in the Senate), is that their (Marcos et al.) time of entry was at 4:30 a.m. There was a call made to Soco (Scene of the Crime Operatives) at 3:49 a.m.
“The twist here, since there is a  CCTV (closed-circuit television) in the DPWH office had the time. They (Marcos team) entered at 3:05 a.m. to 3:06 a.m. But their (CIDG Region 8 chief Supt. Marvin) purpose for saying that they came in at 4:30 a.m., was to cover up the truth and instead of giving the correct time of arrival, they changed  the time. They certainly had a malevolent reason for changing the timeline.They (Marcos team) entered at 3:05 a.m. to 3:06 a.m. But their (CIDG Region 8 chief Supt. Marvin) purpose for saying that they came in at 4:30 a.m, was to cover up the truth and instead of giving the correct time of arrival , they changed  the time. They certainly had a malevolent reason for changing the timeline. They had another motive. There was no reason for the SOCO to come at  3:49 since 3:05-3:06 a.m., they (Marcos et al were already in side and killed Epsinosa.

“Remember during the last hearing, Marcos timed it at 3:05 a.m., But there was a different motive. He (Marcos) deliberately gave the time 4:30 a.m., but for another reason. But this just does not change the finding of premeditated (murder). These are also the findings of the NBI (National Bureau of Investigation). These are also the our findings,” he said.
Lacson was referring to the circumstances leading to the death of Espinosa who was then detained at the Baybay provincial jail but was reported by an informant to CIDG to be allegedly keeping a gun in his cell which led the law enforcers to seek for the issuance and eventually, the serving of a search warrant on him.
Allegedly, Espinosa, father of suspected big-time drug lord in Eastern Visayas, Kerwin Espinosa, put up a fight which prompted the policemen to fire back at him.
It is not conclusive who confiscated the CCTV recordings in the Baybay police station. But who benefits when the CCTV is lost if not those who would be incriminated,  Lacson said in an interview with reporters.
But the senator revealed that a nearby establishment that has CCTV captured the incident, the time when the group arrived.
“There is new  information. We have to wait for the information,” he stresed.
When asked if Lacson could consider the Espinosa killing as a rubout, he answered in the affirmative.
Lacson explained the need to conduct an closed-door session attended by NBI, PNP officials as well as Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II saying that there are some classified matters that need to be discussed and clarified by the his committee investigating the Espinosa case in joint with the committee on justice and human rights chaired by Sen. Richard Gordon.
“We’re wrapping up the legislative inquiry so we can now start preparing the committee report and report it out on the floor this coming January,” he said.
“We submit to the NBI, since its investigation is  exhaustive and more complete but just the same the conclusions are the same,”  he said.
DoJ summons out
Police officials behind the cold-blooded murder of Mayor Espinosa and another inmate inside a Baybay, Leyte jail has been formally asked by the Department of Justice to appear before prosecutors next week.
Subpoenae were issued the policemen to answer the multiple murder and perjury complaints filed against them by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) for the deaths of Espinosa and fellow inmate Raul Yap inside the sub-provincial jail in Baybay City last November 5.
The  subpoenae were sent to the Philippine National Police (PNP) headquarters in Camp Crame which required the respondents led by Supt. Marvin Marcos, chief of the PNP Criminal Investigation and Detection Group Region 8 (PNP-CIDG 8) to appear during the preliminary investigation of the case and answer the complaints against them. The five-member panel of prosecutors, chaired by Senior Assistant State Prosecutor Lilian Doris Alejo  set the preliminary investigation on December 20, 2016 and January 8, 2017, 10am, at the DoJ Multi-purpose Hall.
The complaint was filed by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) after its investigation showed that  Espinosa and Yap were summarily executed.
Aside from Marcos, other respondents in the complaint were  Chief Inspector Leo Daio Laraga; Senior Inspector (SI) Deogracia Pedong Diaz; SI Fritz Bioco Blanco; SPO4 Juanito Ampado Duarte; SPO4
Melvin Mendoza Caboyit; SPO4 Eric Palattao Constantino; SPO2 Benjamin Layague Dacallos; SPO2 Alphinor Milla Serrano, Jr.; PO3 Johnny Abuda  Ibanez; PO3 Norman Tiu Abellanosa; PO2 Niel Patrimonio Centino; PO1 Bernard Rodriguez Orpilla; PO3 Lloyd Ortinez Ortiguesa; PO1 Jerlan Sadia Cabiyaan; Cristal Jane Briones Gisma; Divine Grace Baclas Songalia, all assigned at PNP-CIDG 8; as well as Chief Inspector Calixto Cabardo Canillas, Jr.; Inspector Lucresito Adana Candelosas; SPO2 Antonio Romangca Docil; SPO1 Mark Christian Castillo Cadilo; PO2 John Ruel Baldevia Doculan; and PO2 Jaime Pacuan Bacsal, all assigned at Regional Maritime Unit 8.
Laraga, Abellanosa and Paul Olendan are facing separate complaint for perjury.
The NBI said Espinosa and Yap were killed in a rub-out and not a shootout as claimed by the policemen who conducted the raid on their prison cell.“There was unison in their purpose and action, signifying that they were all moved by a single criminal intent,” the NBI said.The respondents had claimed Espinosa and Yap were in possession of firearms and refused to allow the raiding team to search their cell.

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