This Holy Week, Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin C. Remulla advised those “‘found involved” in the March 4 killings of Negros Oriental Gov. Roel R. Degamo and eight other persons: “Repent.”
“It is a time for us to look at our sins, to repent,” Remulla said in a chance interview with journalists.
Tagged as “masterminds” in the killings were Negros Oriental 3rd District Rep. Arnolfo “Arnie” A. Teves Jr. and his bodyguard, Marvin H. Miranda, a military reservist.
Miranda had been arrested and now in the custody of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).
Teves, on the other hand, has not returned to the Philippines after his official travel abroad expired last March 9. He denied alleged involvement in the killings.
Remulla had said that if we use cinema as an analogy, Miranda was “the director, producer of props, and casting director because he recruited the hitmen, while Congressman Teves was the executive producer of the whole production.”
“The problem is this is not cinema. This really took place. Governor Degamo was killed along with eight others and there were other people hurt,” he stressed.
Multiple murder and multiple frustrated murder charges have been filed before the Department of Justice (DOJ) against Miranda who had been subjected to inquest proceedings. The DOJ has yet to come out with its resolution.
Remulla said he has not received a work yet from the NBI when the complaints against Teves will be filed.
Teves’ camp had said they are considering their participation in the preliminary investigation which will be conducted as soon as the complaints are filed.
“We will proceed with or without their participation. We will force them to participate in some point in time,” Remulla declared as he pointed out: “We are objective in what we do here.”
He reiterated that the Degamo slaying case is “a closed case.”
“The masterminds, the actors, the participants are already under custody save for one or two who still have to account to what they did,” he said.
“As far as I know we have gotten to the point that we can win the cases already thus far,” he stressed.
“We are talking about so far 13 respondents or 12 respondents with 27 cases each excluding Teves,” Remulla also said.
Ten suspects in the killings, aside from Miranda, are in the custody of the NBI. Several of them pointed to Teves as “mastermind” and signified their intentions to cooperate with the government.
Of the ten suspects, mostly discharged soldiers, four were arrested while six others surrendered to law enforcers.
— Jeffrey Damicog
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