THE family of slain Bien Unido mayor Gisela Boniel slammed the defense in the parricide case against former Bohol Provincial Board Member Niño Rey Boniel for the delay in the hearing of the case.
The Bendong family, through their lawyer Amando Virgil Ligutan, said they were “utterly disappointed” with the postponement of the hearing yesterday.
“Apparently, the defense is not prepared for the hearing. Clearly, that is the reason why accused Niño Rey Boniel is intentionally absent today,” the statement read.
The prosecution was supposed to present its first witness, Riolito Boniel.
But the defense asked Judge Ferdinand Collantes to put off the presentation since the accused was “not feeling well.”
Collantes, of the Regional Trial Court branch 65 in Lapu-Lapu City, moved Riolito’s presentation to Oct. 26.
“If accused is really innocent, why can’t he muster enough strength to attend the hearing and confront our witness?” the victim’s family said. “He is a coward. But we are still confident that sooner or later he will face the full brunt of the law for what he did to Gisela.”
Niño Rey was tagged as the mastermind in the disappearance of his wife by his cousin Riolito.
But Boniel, in his counter-affidavit, had said that the supposed witnesses—Riolito and Randel Lupas—were “pressured” by the police to come up with a “fabricated tale” to pin him down.
Boniel did not enter any plea during his arraignment on June 14, saying his lawyers have filed a petition questioning the legality of his arrest before the Department of Justice.
Thus, the court entered the “not guilty” plea for Boniel and his co-accused Wilfredo Hoylar and Restituto Magoncia Jr., for murder. GMD