Massacre trial resumes today-A A +A
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
THE first prosecution witness of the controversial Maguindanao massacre case will continue his testimony at the resumption of the hearing at Camp Bagong Diwa today, Wednesday.
State Prosecutor Juan Pedro Navera said if Lakmudin Saliao will be able to finish his testimony, the defense panel can start with their cross examination immediately.
“The presentation of the next prosecution witness will depend if we finish the direct examination early and the length of the cross examination,” the prosecutor said.
In his testimony last September 8, Saliao told the court that the prime suspect, former Datu Unsay town mayor Andal Ampatuan Jr., wanted all those in the Mangudadatu convoy killed including members of the media.
He also said the clan’s patriarch Andal Sr. and former Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Governor Zaldy Ampatuan were present in the meetings that hatched the killings.
Earlier, the families of the massacre victims expressed concern on possible delays of the trial, considering the sheer number of witnesses from the defense and the prosecution.
Aside from the 197 accused in the case, the court has to contend with more than 500 witnesses.
More than 60 accused are currently detained while manhunt operations for the rest of the suspects are continuing.
Private prosecutor Nena Santos said they are mulling possible options to hasten the trial of the controversial case.
Santos said they will be asking the Supreme Court to increase the number of hearings and lighten the case loads of Judge Solis-Reyes. (AH/Sunnex)