WHILE conducting surveillance on a man suspected of participating in the ambush of former Compostela mayor Joselito Valencia Reynes, police arrested a man and his son for possession of firearms in Barangay Molao, Compostela yesterday dawn.

Police arrested Dominador Viloria Sr., 54, and his son, Dominador Jr., 23, after they were caught in possession of handguns. The elder Viloria is a former municipal employee.

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But before authorities entertained questions from the media, Dominador’s wife Lucia, 50, went on air over radio dySS, alleging the police barged into their house and forced her husband and son to go with them.

Lucia told dySS anchorman and Sun.Star Cebu columnist Bobby Nalzaro they were shocked when the police damaged their door and allegedly ransacked the house.

She claimed the police wanted her husband to tell them what he knows about the ambush on Reynes. She said she was later allowed to go home but her husband and son were asked to remain.

“Wa ko’y kalibutan ngano silang gi-ingon ani. Wala ra ba sila’y warrant. Gisulod mi sa among balay nga wa mi sultihi ngano (I don’t why the police are doing this to them.

They entered our house without a warrant and without telling us why they were there),” Lucia said.

However, Chief Insp. Romeo Santander, chief of the Regional Special Operations Group (RSOG), said while police were observing the Vilorias at a distance from the house, they already saw the .357 revolver glinting in Dominador Sr.’s possession.

But he suddenly noticed the police were nearby and he ran inside the house.

Santander said they knocked on the door and introduced themselves as police officers because they saw the gun.

He added when they entered the house, Dominador Sr. was pointing the gun at them.

“Kung nagbinuang pa mi sa among trabaho, pusilon na unta namo siya. Pero ni-respeto mi sa bata nga naa sa sulod sa balay (If we intended to violate the rules, we would have shot him. But we didn’t since there was a child inside the house),” Santander told reporters, citing Dominador Sr.’s nine-year-old son was inside.

Santander also alleged they chanced upon Dominador Jr. at the back of the house, allegedly drunk and in possession of a .45 pistol.

The Vilorias will be charged with illegal possession of firearms and ammunition.

Torture

Lawyer Rex Fernandez, who is representing the father and son, told reporters he will file cases against the police, claiming their arrest was illegal.

He said he will prepare cases for violation of domicile, arbitrary detention, torture and child abuse against the police. Yesterday, he said he will try to work out the filing of a writ of habeas corpus and possibly a writ of amparo.

He said the crime of torture will apply to the case because Dominador Jr. was allegedly blindfolded.

A child abuse complaint will be filed because Dominador Sr.’s nine-year-old son saw what happened.

“What they are doing is illegal. There was no warrant of arrest,” Fernandez said.

He scoffed at Santander’s explanation for barging inside the house.

“Planted! Nibalik na ta sa Martial Law ani? (Are we back in the Martial Law years?)” he said.

Santander said Dominador Sr. and another son only identified as Bobong were two of the personalities they were putting under surveillance in connection with the murder of Reynes last Monday.

He claimed some of the witnesses said Dominador Sr. was a lookout, and was seen near a resort where Reynes stopped for drinks after attending a wake and before he got shot.

Santander added Dominador Sr. even shaved his head to change his haircut after the killing so he would not be recognizable.

Hair

In an interview at the detention cell, Dominador Sr. admitted he had his wife shave his head Thursday because the length of his hair was uneven.

But he denied having taken part in the murder of Reynes and owning a gun.

“Ngano gud tawn? Dili na tinuod ma’am uy. Wa ko’y kalibutan ana (Why would I do that?

I don’t know anything about the killing),” Dominador Sr. told reporters.

He admitted he supported the opposing party but denied having a hand in Reynes’s killing.

Dominador Sr. said he worked as an ambulance driver during the term of former mayor Ritchie Wagas, but said his contract ended last June 30. Since then, he has been driving a motorcycle-for-hire for a living.

But Santander said because they received information that Dominador Sr. was armed, they decided to place him under surveillance and use the data to apply for a search warrant against him.

Santander said they will coordinate with the Cebu Provincial Police Office to aid them in their investigation on the murder case of Reynes.

Police are looking into Reynes’ activities as campaign manager during the last elections as one of the motives for the crime. (MEA)