A BOY has identified the 16-year-old suspect in police custody as the one who shot Nicolas Ting in Cabancalan, Mandaue City on the night of June 21.
The identification was done during inquest proceedings at the office of Assistant Mandaue City Prosecutor Felix Geromo yesterday.
At the Police Regional Office (PRO) 7, the task force organized to look into the attack on the Ting brothers is considering turning as state witness the person who claimed to have served as conduit between the alleged mastermind and the attackers.
PRO 7 Director Lani-o Nerez directed the legal division to look into the degree of participation of Edwin Juab, 28, in the ambush of Nicolas.
Nicolas, 69, was shot and injured while on board his Honda CRV in Barangay Cabancalan, Mandaue City. He got hit in the face and chest but survived the attack.
Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) Director Patroci-nio Comendador Jr. said Juab served as the conduit between Larry Sanoy Ting, the victim’s 54-year-old nephew, and the 16-year-old gunman.
While the application for Juab to become a state witness will be processed, he was included in the filing of the frustrated murder case yesterday, Comendador said.
Charged yesterday were Larry; Juab; Jordan Espinosa Miral, 30, who allegedly drove the getaway motorcycle; and the 16-year old gunman.
Juab said someone who identified himself as “Abay” asked him to kill Nicolas for P100,000. Last March, Abay told him to go to Dumaguete City because Nicolas was there. He said he chanced upon “Abay” in a hotel lobby while they were talking on the phone.
When Ting failed to appear at the site where he was waiting, Juab went home to Cebu.
After numerous failed attempts, Juab said he asked Miral and the gunman to take over the deal and be the one to kill the target.
After they were arrested and Larry was presented to Juab, the latter said he recognized Nicolas’ nephew as the person who called himself Abay whom he saw in the hotel lobby in Dumaguete.
The boy (named withheld for being a minor and for security reasons) said in his affidavit that he saw the gunman shoot Ting’s car while riding a motorcycle driven by his cohort.
A 22-year-old witness corroborated the statement and said Miral, who drove the motorcycle, bought two bottles of beer before the attack. A 60-year-old witness said she recognized the gunman as the one drinking beer before the ambush. She said she even gestured to the gunman to take shelter because it was raining that night.
Police said Miral and the gunman did not finish drinking their beer and even left the change for the P500 that they paid for it
because Nicolas was already in the area.
In yesterday’s proceedings, Larry cried while seated beside Nixon Dizon, the victim’s son. Larry repeatedly denied he had a hand in the attack.
Dizon begged off from being interview yesterday, saying he might say something that could hurt Manuel’s family or jeopardize the investigation.
According to police, Larry wanted Nicolas killed because of a P20-million debt. When Sun.Star Cebu asked him about this, Larry refused to comment. Nixon, however, confirmed Larry owed his father the amount.
Nerez, in an interview with reporters, said he is optimistic the task force has an airtight case against Larry and the other suspects, based on the statements of witnesses and pieces of evidence gathered against them.
With the filing of the charges against Larry and the other suspects named in the frustrated murder of Nicolas, the task force is concentrating on the operation to go after those behind the killing of Manuel, the older brother of Nicolas.
Nerez said the task force already identified the gunman.
The police are still establishing the link between the attacks of the Ting brothers.