Arraignment of rebel leader moved anew

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Tuesday, April 15, 2014


THE arraignment of one of the most wanted New People's Army (NPA) member in Davao Region accused of abducting three Citizen Armed Force Geographical Unit (Cafgu) personnel in Barangay Tambobong, Baguio District Davao City in 2012 was rescheduled anew after one of the lead prosecutors in the case was absent during the hearing Tuesday.

Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 16 Judge Emmanuel Carpio reset the arraignment for Roberto Castillote, alias Ka Bobby, on May 8 after Prosecutor Victoriano Bello Jr. went on-leave during the supposed arraignment Tuesday.

[READ: Davao's most wanted nabbed]

An arraignment was supposedly scheduled last March 21 yet it was rescheduled on Tuesday after Castillote requested to have the services of lawyer Manuel Quibod rather than from a lawyer from the Public Attorney's Office (PAO).

Castillote was charged for serious illegal detention after he allegedly abducted Civilian Active Auxiliaries (CAAs) Artemio Canobas Sitoy, Romeo Bulod Bago and Tony Pandian, all residents of Barangay Tambobong, Baguio District. The abduction of the complainants took place between December 30 and 31 of 2012.

But while he is yet to make a pleading on the arraignment scheduled May 8, Castillote has other pending cases in another branch of RTC.

RTC Branch 17 is currently handling the robbery, murder, and slight illegal detention case against Castillote who was also accused of detaining seven men and killing one of the captives at Purok 4, Barangay Carmen in Baguio District, Davao City last year.

Castillote has pleaded not guilty for robbing from and detaining Albert Matundo, Cesar Agas, Albin Agas, Jelber Agas, Elmer Agas, Jubert Agas and murdering Paulino Landim Jr. on March 19 while a preliminary conference was already held last April 11.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on April 16, 2014.

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