Primary suspect in Camilon’s disappearance released from Senate detention

MANILA. Miss Grand Philippines 2023 contestant Catherine Camilon and Police Major Allan de Castro.
MANILA. Miss Grand Philippines 2023 contestant Catherine Camilon and Police Major Allan de Castro. Contributed photos

SENATOR Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa has ordered the release of former Major Allan de Castro, the primary suspect in the disappearance of Miss Grand Philippines 2023 contestant Catherine Camilon who was cited in contempt for lying during an inquiry.

Dela Rosa said he ordered De Castro’s release for humanitarian reasons.

"Pinakawalan ko dahil bakasyon ang Senado ng more than one month. Walang magaganap na hearing. Well, bakasyon, naka-break ang Senado. So, hindi ko kinakailangan presensya niya. Pagbalik ng Senado, kung magkakaroon pa kami ng hearing, ipapatawag natin ulit siya," he said.

(I released him because the Senate was on vacation for more than one month. No hearing will take place because the Senate is on break. So, I don't need his presence. When the Senate comes back, if we have another hearing, we will summon him again.)

“Napakawalang-puso naman natin kung magse-Semana Santa na, iiwan pa natin yung tao dyan sa ilalim ng hindi naman natin kailangan... tao lang ako na nakikipag-kapwa-tao. Kasi mahirap naman na abusuhin natin ang power ng Senado,” he added.

(We are so heartless if we leave him here at Senate and its Holy Week… I am just a person who treats another person properly, because it is also difficult for us to abuse the power of the Senate.)

MANILA. Miss Grand Philippines 2023 contestant Catherine Camilon and Police Major Allan de Castro.
Ex-police official detained for lying during Senate hearing

Before making the decision, Dela Rosa said he consulted Senator Robin Padilla, who made the motion to cite De Castro in contempt during the hearing on Camilon’s disappearance by the Senate Committees on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs and Justice and Human Rights on Tuesday, March 19.

He said Padilla agreed.

Padilla made the motion after De Castro repeatedly denied having a relationship with Camilon. This claim was refuted both by the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) based on the pieces of evidence they have gathered and the testimony of a witness who is a close friend of the aspiring beauty queen.

In a private conversation, Dela Rosa said De Castro became emotional as he maintained that they were not in a relationship.

"Umiiyak nga na hindi daw talaga niya girlfriend at wala daw silang relasyon. So ano bang klaseng relasyon meron kayo kung ikaw ay inaakusa ng karamihan na girlfriend. Iyak lang siya at sabi niya hindi niya girlfriend," Dela Rosa said.

(He's crying while saying that they don't have a relationship. So what kind of relationship did you have if most people accuse you of being the girlfriend? He just cried and said she was not his girlfriend.)

But Dela Rosa said that he is still not convinced.

Camilon was last seen in a mall in Lemery, Batangas on October 12, 2023.

De Castro’s alleged driver, Jeffrey Magpantay, was pinpointed as one of the three male persons who transferred a bloody body of a woman whose physical features matched Camilon, from a vehicle to another in a remote area in Bauang, Batangas.

De Castro and Magpantay both denied involvement in the crime. (TPM/SunStar Philippines)

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