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Motives behind radioman’s slay?

 

By Francis Allan L. Angelo

 

POLICE investigators are looking into the issues tackled by Martin Roxas, program director and anchorman of dyVR RMN-Roxas City, who was gunned down Thursday afternoon.

Probers are also grilling the alleged gunmen of Roxas who were arrested hours after the incident.

Chief Supt. Isagani Cuevas, PNP regional director, formed Task Force Martin Roxas composed of the Regional Intelligence Division, Regional Investigation and Detection Management Division, Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, Capiz Provincial Police Office and Roxas City Police Office (RCPO) to investigate Roxas’ assassination.

Senior Supt. Josephus Angan, Capiz provincial police director, is the overall task force commander.

Cuevas, who went to Roxas City to oversee the investigation, said they are eyeing Roxas’ work as the motive for his killing considering that he has been carrying controversial issues weeks before he was shot.

“We have ample personnel here who are handling this case so it can be resolved as soon as possible. The task force will focus on Roxas’s case so we can bring to justice those responsible for his death,” Cuevas said.

The PRO-6 chief said Roxas’s death could be related to his work and the issues he carried while still alive.

Roxas, 32, succumbed to a single gunshot wound in his back. He died at the Capiz Emmanuel Hospital 2:05pm Monday. He left behind his wife Haina and two children.

FINANCIAL AID SCAM, GHOST PROJECTS

According to Roxas’ colleagues at RMN, the slain commentator was tackling the alleged “financial assistance scam” that occurred during the last term of former Roxas City mayor Antonio del Rosario, now representative of the Capiz first congressional district.

Roxas unearthed a set of documents showing how large amounts of financial aid for sick indigents mysteriously disappeared from 2006 to 2007.

Based on the disbursement papers, the indigents were supposed to receive P30,000 to P80,000 to defray their medical expenses. But when the beneficiaries claimed the money from the City Treasurer’s Office, they only got P500 to P1,500.

The exposé emboldened more beneficiaries to come out and execute affidavits attesting that they received less than what was indicated in the disbursement papers.

Incumbent Mayor Vicente Bermejo, who is at odds with del Rosario, has ordered city social welfare and development officer Cynthia Besana, city treasurer Joselito Almodiente and city accountant Teresita Bediones to explain the alleged scam.

Roxas’s wife and colleague said the victim began receiving threatening text messages after carrying the financial aid issue. He also confided to them the presence of unidentified persons stalking their home at Brgy. Tisa, Roxas City.

Roxas also reported to the police last July 30 that three persons kicked his motorcycle at Hemingway Street. The usually unarmed victim scared the suspects by pretending to draw a pistol from his waist.

Aside from the missing financial aid issue, Roxas was also in the process of investigating the P44-million “ghost infrastructure projects” of Bermejo when he was still Capiz governor.

Apparently, del Rosario leaked the issue against Bermejo in an attempt to get back at his former political ally.

SUSPECTS ARRESTED 

Cuevas said they are extracting more information from suspects Christian Tan of Brgy. Quevedo, Maayon, Capiz and Jonel “Bong-Bong” Lastimoso of Brgy. Cagay, Roxas City.

Tan is believed to be the gunman who shot Roxas at Bayot Drive, Roxas City while Lastimoso drove the getaway motorcycle.

The duo was first accosted by the Ivisan police in a checkpoint but instead of stopping, they fled.

Tan was arrested at Ivisan while Lastimoso escaped but was captured by pursuing police hours later.

Chief Insp. Leo Batiles, Roxas City police chief, said over RMN-Iloilo that the suspects changed their clothes after shooting Roxas in an attempt to mislead witnesses and the police.

But witnesses who are now in the custody of the RCPO identified Tan as the triggerman through his blonde hair and black hand gloves.

The two suspects said they evaded the checkpoint because they have pending drug and theft cases.

Roxas City police records show that Lastimoso has two standing arrest warrants for alleged selling of shabu while Tan is a suspected thief.

The two suspects have been subjected to paraffin tests for gunpowder traces in their hands.

Roxas’ body was autopsied yesterday by PNP medico legal, Dr. Owen Lebaquin. The results show that the victim died of hemorrhage due to gunshot wound.

Lebaquin also found that a slug compatible to caliber .9mm bullet pierced Roxas spinal column, heart and lungs.

Lebaquin said a “special bullet” may have been used on the victim.

Scene of the crime operatives, however, failed to find any spent ammunition shells at the crime scene.

Cuevas said they are set to file murder charges against Tan and Lastimoso even as they dig into the mastermind’s identity.

(Visit www.thedailyguardian.com for more news)

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By Francis Allan L. Angelo

 

POLICE in Janiuay, Iloilo confiscated more than 1,000 board feet of alleged “hot lumber” Thursday evening.

Chief Insp. Alex Velez, Janiuay police chief, said the 172 pieces of gemilina, mahogany and acacia were loaded on an Isuzu Elf truck which was intercepted at the corner of Aquino-Nobleza Streets, Janiuay past 10 pm Thursday.

Velez said the lumber, which has an estimated volume of 1,572 board feet, came from Brgy. Kapangyan, Lambunao.    

The truck was driven by Romie Arcenal and his helper Romeo Lactuco, both natives of Lambunao.

Velez said they later found out that the permit to transport and official receipt for the permit which Arcenal and Lactuco presented to them were tampered. The plate number of the truck was also found out be fake while the driver has no license.

Velez said Arcenal and Lactuco were supposed to deliver the hot lumber to a hardware shop in Mandurriao, Iloilo City.

Arcenal and Lactuco are presently detained at the Janiuay police station and will be facing charges for transporting illegally-cut lumber.

(Visit www.thedailyguardian.com for more news)

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