Court to release alleged massacre suspect

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Friday, January 24, 2014


AFTER almost three years of being jailed, a man who was allegedly involved in the high-profile Maguindanao massacre will soon be free as the Quezon City Regional Trial Court (RTC) has issued the order for his release on Thursday.

Jun Aliman, the accused who was previously identified as Sahid Guiamadel, will soon be out of Quezon City Jail Annex as QC RTC branch 221 Judge Jocelyn Solis Reyes instructed the jail warden to release Aliman due to mistaken identity.

Reyes said investigation showed that Aliman is not the same person as Guiamadel.

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Guiamadel was among those charged with 58 counts of murder in connection with the massacre in Maguindanao on November 23, 2009.

"Given the value of the undisputed evidence on record emanating from the CIDG officer who at this instance, regularly performed their duties, and who admitted that concerned CIDG personnel erred in effecting the arrest, the court so concludes that the movant (Aliman) is not the accused Guiamadel," read the order.

On November 23, 2013, the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) sent a letter to Reyes stating that Aliman is innocent of any crime and that the real person involved in the Maguindanao massacre was named Arnel Abdullah, who was separately arrested for the alleged illegal possession of firearms in Sultan Kudarat on February 22, 2012.

Superintendent Benjamin Silo, acting chief of the CIDG investigation division, explained that the PO3 Edgar Dingcong of the Philippine National Police Region 12 (Soccsksargen) who arrested Aliman admitted that he was misled and fooled by his informant. The informant had alleged personal interests and motives against Aliman.

"The arrest of Aliman was anchored primarily on the picture and warrant of arrest against Sahid Guiamadel. It was not supported by any affidavit of identification or any other pertinent documents of identification that Jun P. Aliman and Sahid Guiamadel is one and the same person," Silo said.

Moreover, the investigators said that there were pieces of evidence including sworn statements of various persons supporting that Abdullah is the real Guiamadel.

The prosecution panel, however, said they believe in the findings of the CIDG investigation and was convinced that Abdullah was the real Guiamadel.

The panel said the lack of coordination among various government agencies resulted to the arrest of a wrong person.

"While we commend their zeal in bringing the perpetrators of these hideous crimes to justice, we lament an apparent lack of coordination between the different entities tasked to affect the warrants for those accused that are still at large," the prosecutors said.

Aliman, was arrested on December 14, 2013 in Kidapawan City but was not arraigned for the multiple murder charge since then as he kept on filing motions saying that he is not Guiamadel.

Reyes directed the issuance of an arrest warrant for Abdullah, who is currently detained at the Sultan Kudarat provincial jail.

The said issue is currently up for resolution before the court.

Meanwhile, the resolution to set Aliman free is now at the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology for proper action. (Sunnex)

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