Friday, August 23, 2019

Woman's body found floating off Tabuelan, Cebu

CEBU (Updated) -- The body of a woman was found floating off the shores of Maravilla, Tabuelan, Cebu, and was brought to Escalante City in Negros Occidental Saturday afternoon.

Senior Police Officer 1 Jojit Ruiz, chief investigator of the Escalante City Police Station, told SunStar Cebu that Remigio dela Cruz, a fisherman, discovered the body around 1:30 p.m.

"He called our police station, and then we summoned the Bantay Dagat, who fetched the body in the territorial waters of Tabuelan and brought it here," Ruiz said.

He said the body is naked except for a pair of underwear and it's in an advanced state of decomposition.

"We are already attempting to take a fingerprint from the corpse but because it's really decayed, we're having a hard time," Ruiz said.

The investigator described the woman as in her 50s, with white hair, and around 5'0” tall.

The Police Regional Office (PRO)-Central Visayas is checking if the body might belong to Bien Unido, Bohol Mayor Gisela Bendong-Boniel, who was allegedly kidnapped and slain by her husband, Bohol Provincial Board Member Niño Rey Boniel, last June 7.

Meanwhile, PRO-Central Visayas Director Noli Taliño said that they expect to receive tomorrow or Tuesday the official results of the DNA test taken from the bloodstains on the pump boat that allegedly carried the Boniel couple on the night she was allegedly killed.

Memorial service

In a related development, friends and former co-workers of Gisela at AirAsia gathered on the site where her body was allegedly dumped in the waters between the islands of Caubian and Olango in Lapu-Lapu City.

The group was joined by Gisela's best friend Angela Leyson; Riolito Boniel, one of the suspects in her alleged killing and is now a state witness; and Edgar Tapere, the man who drove Niño from Lapu-Lapu City to Barangay Guadalupe, Cebu City in the morning that Gisela disappeared.

"This is not a sign of giving up. This is a sign of saying prayers for her (Gisela) that she is not alone. We are her family," said Leyson.

The group, which rode on two pump boats, was escorted by 10 personnel of the PRO-Central Visayas led by Senior Supt. Jonathan Cabal, chief of the Regional Intelligence Division.

Rev. Edward Flora of the United Church of Christ in the Philippines in Cordova presided over the memorial service that was held on board one of the vessels.

Leyson said she is glad that the blood found on the pump boat “matches” the saliva swab taken from the mayor's mother.

"I hope Niño will be consumed by his conscience," she said in Tagalog.

Leyson challenged Niño's camp to show proof that her best friend is still alive.

She also thanked Taliño and Cabal for keeping them safe in Cebu.
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