3 suspects in Batocabe slay want to become state witnesses – Albayalde

Credit to Author: The Manila Times| Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2019 06:50:49 +0000

THREE suspects in the assassination of AKO Bicol Rep. Rodel Batocabe want to become state witnesses, Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Oscar Albayalde said on Wednesday.

He said the three, whom he did not identify, were applying under the government’s witness protection program after they surrendered to police and provided extrajudicial confessions about their knowledge of the crime.

Albayalde said, however, that the acceptance of the three suspects would depend on the court.

Five of the suspects are under the custody of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) after they surrendered to authorities on separate occasions.

They are Rolando Arimando, Emmanuel Rosello, Jaywin Babor, Christopher Nava, and Danillo Muella.

Albayalde said they placed themselves under police custody for fear for their lives.

Henry Yuson, the self-confessed gunman, was detained for rape charges.

All the suspects pointed to Daraga, Albay Mayor Carlwyn Baldo as the alleged mastermind behind the assassination plot.

Baldo was arrested on January 22 for illegal possession of firearms but was rushed to the hospital for asthma attack and high blood pressure.

Albayalde also said a P25 million reward (P20 million from President Rodrigo Duterte and P5 million from various representatives) to give to the witnesses.

Negros Occidental Rep. Albee Benitez said on Wednesday that aside from the P5 million that was given to the PNP last week, an additional P8 million was given today.

He said that Emmanuel Judavar, the main witness, has the biggest chance of getting the cash reward but he would have to wait for the CIDG to submit its evaluation as to who would deserve it.

“We haven’t given [the cash reward] but the most entitled ones are the witnesses. Judavar is highly prioritized among them,” Albayalde said. ROY NARRA


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