Surrendered suspect in Lopez, Cohen murder eyed as state witness

MANILA. The vehicle believed to be used by the persons of interest in the case of missing beauty pageant contestant from Pampanga Geneva Lopez and her Israeli boyfriend Yitshak Cohen.
MANILA. The vehicle believed to be used by the persons of interest in the case of missing beauty pageant contestant from Pampanga Geneva Lopez and her Israeli boyfriend Yitshak Cohen.Photo from CIDG

THE Philippine National Police (PNP) is considering the possibility of recommending one of the suspects in the murder of Kapampangan beauty pageant contestant Geneva Lopez and her Israeli fiancé Yitshak Cohen as a state witness.

In a press conference, PNP Public Information Office (PIO) chief Colonel Jean Fajardo noted the importance of the information provided by one of the surrendered suspects, which led to the recovery of the bodies of the couple in a remote quarry site in Barangay Sta. Lucia, Capas, Tarlac on Saturday, July 6, two weeks since they were last seen.

Alias Junjun said he drove the vehicle carrying the bodies of Lopez and Cohen to the place where they were buried.

The vehicle of the victims were later set on fire.

“Ito ‘yung mga testimonya na napakahalaga pero we don’t want to just rely dito sa testimonya nitong key witness. Gusto natin i-backup yun ng mga forensic evidence para siguraduhin na backed up at matibay in case na magkakaroon tayo later ng pagbago ng isip at wala siyang alam,” said Fajardo.

(These are very important testimonies, but we don’t want to just rely on the testimony of this key witness. We want to back it up with forensic evidence to ensure that it is supported and strong, in case there is a change of mind later and they claim to know nothing.)

Fajardo said they will provide the court with all the necessary evidence and documentation for his application as a state witness.

She said the Special Investigation Task Group has already provided security personnel to ensure the safety of the family of the surrendered suspect.

Two former police personnel, Michael Guiang and Rommel Abuso, were tagged as the brains behind the murder of Lopez and Cohen. They were arrested on Friday over illegal possession of firearms.

Guiang is reportedly in debt to Lopez, which allegedly prompted him to plan her execution. (TPM/SunStar Philippines)

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