Police nab suspect in the slay of commentator Joaquin Briones

Marje Pelayo   •   July 13, 2018   •   4408

Mugshot of the suspect in the killing of a tabloid commentator Joaquin Briones


QUEZON CITY, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Thursday(July 12) arrested the primary suspect in the murder of tabloid reporter and radio commentator Joaquin Briones in Masbate last year.

The suspect, identified as Antonio Del Rosario alias “Ronnie/Panoy” was nabbed inside a fast food chain in Visayas Avenue in Quezon City through a warrant of arrest issued by Masbate RTC Branch 44.

Del Rosario is believed to be a member of the “Sako” criminal gang, a robbery hold-up and gun-for-hire group. He is the number one most wanted person in the list of criminals of Balud Municipal Police Station in Masbate.

Del Rosario denied any involvement in the crime and insisted that he was in Manila when it happened. He said he is ready to prove his innocence.

“Nagpapasalamat ako kahit papaano ay nahuli nila ako ng maayos para maliwanagan ng korte. Ang mga binibintang nila sa akin, handa kong harapin yun,” Del Rosario said.
The Presidential Task Force on Media Security, meanwhile, was pleased with the arrest of Del Rosario.

“Magkakaroon na ng justice yung pagkamatay ni briones,” said retired PSupt. Richie Duldulao, the Task Force head.

Four gunshot wound hit Briones that caused his death in March 2017. Reports said the crime was due to his fierce criticisms against illegal fishing, underground gambling and illegal drug trade in their province.

The Task Force is closely coordinating with the PNP to solve the cases and serve justice to the slain journalists. – Lea Ylagan / Marje Pelayo

Paniqui shooting an isolated incident, not sin of entire PNP — DILG

Marje Pelayo   •   December 21, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año confirmed on Monday (December 21) that administrative and criminal cases will be filed against the policeman who shot dead a mother and her son, after an altercation in Paniqui, Tarlac.

According to Año, the formal investigation has begun and DILG assures that, “the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the National Police Commission (NPC) will conduct a thorough, impartial, and swift investigation.”

“We do not and will never tolerate such acts and we will make sure that he will account for his crimes. I have likewise directed PNP Chief Police General Debold Sinas to extend assistance to the family of the victims at this time of bereavement,” Año said.

The suspect of the incident, Police Senior Master Sergeant Joniel Nuezca, has been disarmed and is already in the custody of the Tarlac Provincial Police Office.

“This is an unfortunate but isolated incident. While there are unfortunate incidents like this, the vast majority of our PNP personnel perform their sworn duties everyday with honor and integrity to protect and serve the people,” the Secretary added.

“The sin of Nuezca is not the sin of the entire Philippine National Police. As we have seen during this pandemic, they place their very lives on the line as frontliners in our COVID response,” Año stressed.

He also reminded all police officers to, “remain calm at all times, to control their emotions, and to conduct themselves in a manner befitting their position as agents of the law.”

Meanwhile, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said his agency will closely monitor the investigation on the matter to make sure justice is served to the victims.

“I am disturbed that altercations like that in the subject incident could suddenly lead to deaths of persons,” he said in a statement.

“As soon as the local police has filed the appropriate charges, the prosecutor’s office will conduct a preliminary investigation to determine probable cause,” he added. MNP (with inputs from Raymund David / Dante Amento)

PNP launches manhunt vs. loggers who assaulted police in Cagayan

Maris Federez   •   November 28, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine National Police (PNP) has launched a manhunt against several suspects who assaulted a police team that was conducting operations against illegal logging activities in Cagayan province.

Police General Debold M Sinas has ordered pursuit operations against the suspects who fired at the police team wounding a police lieutenant, according to a PNP Public Information Office (PIO) press release dated November 28.

“More aggressive police operations will continue against illegal logging activities on orders of President Rodrigo R Duterte despite this temporary setback,” the PNP chief said.

Follow-up operations are underway to recover the firearms used in the attack, Sinas added.

The PNP chief issued the order after receiving reports submitted by PBGen. Crizaldo Nieves, Regional Director of Police Regional Office 2 regarding the shooting incident that wounded PLT Randy Baccay, Deputy Chief of Police of Pañablanca Police Station.

Sinas instructed Nieves to extend P50,000.00 financial assistance for the medical expenses of Baccay, the news release said. 

The operation was part of Cagayan’s rebuilding efforts following the aftermath of massive flooding only two weeks ago.

Nieves said Baccay and his team were responding to reports of the presence of illegally-cut timber stockpiled in Sitio Dalayat, Minanga, Lagum Peñablanca, Cagayan on Thursday evening.

Armed suspects opened fire during the operation, hitting Baccay while the rest of the team launched counter action. Baccay was immediately evacuated to a nearby hospital for treatment.

The team, on the other hand, promptly arrested and took Ernest Sibbaluca, identified as among the attackers, to the Peñablanca Police Station for investigation.

Sibbaluca is facing criminal charges for direct assault upon an agent of authority and frustrated murder, Asalan said. —/mbmf

Infra damage in Masbate quake estimated at P23.96M — DPWH

Robie de Guzman   •   August 20, 2020

MANILA, Philippines –  The damage to infrastructure brought by the magnitude 6.6 earthquake that hit Masbate and other areas was estimated to be at P23.96 million, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) said.

In a statement issued Wednesday, the DPWH said that several roads, bridges and buildings sustained damage due to the earthquake that struck on Tuesday morning.

Partial cost of damage on roads is at P5.64 million, bridges at P8.96 million, and public buildings at P9.35 million, it said.

Based on its monitoring, the DPWH said that all national roads and bridges are passable in Masbate Island but there are sections that sustained damage.

“Assessment revealed that the following sections along Masbate-Cataingan-Placer Road were damaged: expansion joint of Gahit Bridge at K0070+420 in Cataingan; slope protection of the abutments of Nipa Bridge at K0022+080 and expansion joint of Nabangig Bridge at K0077+150 both in Palanas,” the department said.

Other roads and bridges that were damaged due to the quake also include: girder of Pinangapugan Bridge at K0035+040, pile cap (jacketing) and slope protection of Impapanan Bridge at K0022+322, and girder of Marcella Bridge at K0022+080 all located in the town of Uson. Damaged to road pavement were also observed at K0034+920 – K0036+000, Uson; K0070+680, Palanas; K0077+150, Cataingan; and K0085+150 – K0085+250, Placer.

“The K0075+836 section of Cataingan-Poblacion Road in Barangay Poblacion, Cataingan, Masbate also sustained damage box culvert,” the DPWH said.

“In Camarines Sur, DPWH assessment team noted minor damage at bank protection of Panganiban Bridge at K0482+425 in Barangay Nierva, Nabua town,” it added.

The department said it has installed road warning signs and safety devices along affected sections to guide motoring public.

The DPWH’s Bureau of Maintenance also reported damage to the following public buildings and ports: walls, partitions, tiles and glass door of DPWH Masbate 3rd District Engineering Office Building in Balocawe, Dimasalang; damage on columns, walls, and partitions of Palanas Police Station Building in Poblacion, Palanas; damage on roofing and firewall of Inocencio Central School Building in Villa-Inonencio, Placer; Cataingan Public Market and Cataingan Port in Poblacion, Cataingan; and Dimasalang Port in Poblacion, Dimasalang town.

The department said its post-earthquake assessment teams have already been deployed on the ground to check the extent of damage caused by the strong earthquake that occurred close to Masbate Island.


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