Oro blast task group: 'Justice will be served'-A A +A
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
JUSTICE will surely be served for the victims July 26 blast, the Special Investigation Task Group (SITG) said Tuesday after the preliminary hearing of the charges filed against the blast suspects.
SITG spokesperson Michael John Deloso is optimistic after the preliminary hearing at the City Prosecutor's Office Tuesday yielded result favoring the investigating team as witnesses solidly identified Usman Hapids and his cohorts to be responsible for the blast that killed 26 and hurt 46 others.
Five witnesses, two of them complainants including the widow of Misamis Oriental Board Member Roland Lagbas, attended the hearing.
Deloso, who was at the hearing, said witnesses were firm in identifying Hapids. Their affidavit and their statements during the hearing coincided.
He said the three-panel prosecutor handling the case against Hapids slapped the latter for six multiple murder charges considering there were eight people who died in the blast.
Deloso said: “The other two complainants, who are still in Manila, would also file the same charges.”
Deloso said they filed the charges before the City Prosecutor’s Office in the hope that it could be elevated to the courts and eventually get the warrant to arrest the suspects, “if we can find him (Hapids) anywhere in the country.”
He said it is a general rule that in arresting a suspect, authorities must possess a warrant of arrest.
City Prosecutor Fidel Macauyag, in a text message, said the panel of prosecutors has just finished the hearing at past 6 p.m. Tuesday and has submitted the case for a resolution.
Macauyag said witnesses have “affirmed their statements and stood pat on the identification of the respondent (Hapids).”
“The case was submitted for resolution now. We hope to be able to issue our resolution on Friday or Monday. The panel is aware that the case is in view with public interest, thus we will try our best to resolve the case the soonest possible time,” he said.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on August 21, 2013.