PNP says ex-farmers ‘persons of interest’ in Sagay massacre

Marje Pelayo   •   October 22, 2018   •   3763


Remains of farmers killed on October 19, 2018 in Hacienda Nene in Sagay City, Negros Occidental | NFSW


QUEZON CITY, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) revealed on Monday (October 22) that neighbors of the slain farmers in Hacienda Nene in Sagay City, Negros Occidental identified the person possibly behind the massacre in the afternoon of October 19.

The PNP said they are now looking for some persons of interest who, according to witnesses, were former farmers.

“In terms of identity, iyan pa ang niwo-work out natin kasi nagma-match sa sinasabi nating former farm workers din,” said PCInsp. Robert Mansueto, Chief of Sagay City Police.

According to Police Regional Office 6 Director PCSupt. John Bulalacao, the authorities are looking into four angles as to the motive behind the crime – the land owner’s mobilization of armed group, conflict over land ownership, a possible influence of the New People’s Army (NPA), and the old conflict of the land owner with members of the Citizen Armed Force Geographical Unit (CAFGU) unit in 2015.

“Ito daw may-ari na si Ms. Tolentino ay pinarenta ang farm niya pero bago niya pinarenta ay mayroong 40 farmers siya doon at allegedly, ang farmers doon have already in their possession the deed of donation from the land owners. Noong malaman na may deed of donation itong mga biktima pumunta doon sa lugar na instigated by the core members of the Sugarcane Federation ng Negros (Occidental),” explained Supt. Bulalacao.

With this, Bulalacao said, the authorities will also interrogate the core members of the National Federation of Sugar Workers.

The police official said among the three persons of interest, two have already been examined for paraffin test.

“Noong October 20, pinuntahan sila ng mga 40 na alleged farmers at kinausap na huwag sila mag-squat doon sa lugar.  But itong mga namatay, they insisted to stay on kaya noong gabi namatay sila,” Bulalacao said.

The officer said authorities also recovered firearms from the victims including a .38 caliber pistol and shotgun ammunition.

The witnesses also said there were only around 5 to 7 suspects contrary to earlier reports that 40 armed men stormed the sugar farm.

A witness, meanwhile, identified one of the gunmen as also a resident of Hacienda Nene. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Lea Ylagan)


PNP sees ‘murder for insurance’ as possible motive in killing of Korean in Valenzuela

Robie de Guzman   •   March 2, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Investigators are looking into “murder for insurance” as a probable motive in the killing of a Korean national in Valenzuela City, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said.

In a press statement, PNP chief General Debold Sinas said that the ongoing investigation into the murder of Korean businessman, Nam Sunuk “took an interesting turn” as probers uncovered more evidence and facts about the crime.

Sinas said the special task group for Nam Sunuk slay established the possibility of “murder for insurance” after suspects Kimberly Radores and Rica Estrella said in their extra-judicial confession, executed in the presence of lawyers, that the crime was staged and planned by the victim himself.

Sinas said investigators have preserved digital evidence of alleged email messages by the victim to one of the suspects which can further assist in deeper investigation of the case.

He, however, noted that the individual participation of the suspects are enough evidence to establish their culpability in the crime.

Based on initial information and evidence gathered, Nam Sunuk, 55, was shot dead in the backseat of his Hyundai Tucson SUV on the night of February 13, 2021 in Maysan, Valenzuela City.

Police have recovered a Norinco cal.45 pistol and a red Honda Civic believed to have been used in the crime.

Valenzuela City Police has filed murder charges against suspects Radores, Estrella, Rusty Hernadez Cruz, Josephine Pidlaoan Nape, Leana Marie Nagaño aka “Yana”, Bryan Saga Gulfo, Bryan Remlona Escamillas, and Police Corporal Darwin Garcia Castillo.

Three of the suspects, Radores, Estrella and Castillo, executed extra-judicial confessions, in the presence of lawyers Atty. Ian Rex Manuta Visto, Atty. Divina Patty Bagarino Sibay and Atty. Engel Ang-Tong, detailing their personal knowledge of the circumstances surrounding the death of Nam Sunuk.

Sinas said they will closely coordinate with their police counterparts from the Korean National Police thru the Korean Embassy in Manila to share notes on the murder case.

Duterte designates NBI as sole body to probe PNP-PDEA ‘misencounter’

Robie de Guzman   •   February 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has designated the National Bureau of Investigation to be the sole agency to investigate the alleged misencounter between cops and operatives of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), Malacañang said Friday.

“Nagdesisyon po ang ating president na tanging NBI lang po ang mag-iimbestiga duon sa putukan na nangyari sa panig ng mga kapulisan at PDEA diyan po sa Quezon City,” Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said.

The shooting incident involving policemen and PDEA operatives occurred on Wednesday afternoon near a mall along Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City. Four individuals – two cops, a PDEA agent and an informant – were killed in the gun battle.

The PNP and PDEA earlier said that a joint Board of Inquiry has been created to look into the incident.

But due to Duterte’s order, the joint probe will have to be discontinued.

“’Yung mga binuong joint panel para imbestigahan yan, na binuo po ng PNP at PDEA ay di na po magtutuloy sa kanilang imbestigahan,” Roque said.

Both PNP and PDEA assured to work with the NBI in compliance with Duterte’s directive. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

PNP, PDEA to form board of inquiry after gunfight along Commonwealth Avenue

Robie de Guzman   •   February 25, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – A joint board of inquiry, comprised of personnel from the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), will be formed to look into the gunfight that transpired between its members near the Ever Gotesco Mall along Commonwealth Avenue, Quezon City on Wednesday night.

“In the interest of determining the truth behind the incident, a joint PNP-PDEA Board of Inquiry will be formed to determine what transpired and who should be held liable,” the PNP Public Information Office (PIO) said in a statement.

The PNP-PIO added that Police chief General Debold Sinas has appointed the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) as the lead investigating body, while the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) has been designated “to speak on any updates from the PNP in order to keep the public updated with accurate and relevant information.”

The shooting incident between police officers and anti-illegal drug operatives was said to have occurred in an area outside of the mall early Wednesday night.

The mall management said that its shoppers were safe inside its premises when the incident happened and asked the public to refrain from sharing any unconfirmed information online.

The gunfight left several casualties but it remains unclear how and why it transpired as the PNP and PDEA have yet to disclose information about the incident.

Following the gunfight, PDEA spokesperson Derrick Carreon said their agents were on a legitimate operation in the area but appealed to the media to allow them time to obtain clear details about the incident.

“Sa ngayon, isa lang po ang malinaw, na ang PDEA Special Enforcement Service ay nandoon on a legitimate operation po. ‘Yun lang ang alam namin at this point,” he said in a message to reporters.

Meanwhile, the PNP and PDEA both assured the public that the incident, while serious,  “will in no way affect the continuing operational relationship and coordination they have long firmed up in the fight against illegal drugs.”


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