PNP chief asked to arrest lawyer’s ‘killers’

CEBU City Councilor Nestor Archival asked Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Ricardo Marquez to help them locate and arrest three former officials of the Highway Patrol Group (HPG) in Central Visayas.

In his two-page letter, Councilor Nestor, through his lawyer Democrito Barcenas, requested Marquez to assist them in finding the three suspects in the ambush-slay of his brother, Atty. Noel.

“My brother, who was a practicing lawyer, left a wife and small children. They are all crying for justice,” read Nestor’s letter.

In the letter, Councilor Nestor expressed his dismay on the allegedly failure of the police to arrest the suspects.

The warrant of arrest issued by Regional Trial Court Judge Maximo Perez in Argao, Cebu was returned to the court after the law
enforcement agencies failed to arrest the accused.

“It has been more than nine months since the warrant of arrest was returned to the court unserved. Despite efforts by the NBI agents to locate the three accused, they were able to elude arrest and are now fugitives from justice,” said Councilor Nestor.

Iglesia, Lerion and Bacani are facing a multiple murder case for the deaths of Atty. Noel, his aide Candido Miñoza and driver Alejandro Jayme, and a frustrated murder case for injuries sustained by Paolo Cortes during the ambush last year.

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has launched a nationwide manhunt against them.

The councilor said he believes in Marquez’s competence and integrity in cleansing the PNP ranks of scalawags.

“Please do something to effect the arrest of the police officers so that the victims of the brutal massacre of my brother and two others will be given justice,” the councilor said.

Regional Trial Court Branch 16 Presiding Judge Sylva Paderanga is currently handling the multiple murder and frustrated murder case against Supt. Romualdo Iglesia, former HPG 7 director; Insp. Joselito Lerion, former HPG 7 Special Operations Team chief; and PO1 Alex Bacani.

Barcenas said they have no objection to the new judge. The case was raffled to Judge Paderanga last month after the Supreme Court granted the petition of the city councilor to transfer the venue of the case from the Regional Trial Court Branch 26 in Argao town to Cebu City.

The SC’s Second Division had also denied the request of the three accused to transfer the venue of the case from Cebu to any court in Manila.

The charges faced by Bacani, Lerion and Iglesia are both non-bailable offenses.
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