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Arrest warrant out vs. Teves, 3 others over Governor Degamo massacre

DUMAGUETE CITY — Expelled Negros Oriental Rep. Arnolfo Teves Jr. may soon catch up with the law.

This as the Manila Regional Trial Court issued an arrest warrant on Teves and three others last September 5 againstTeves over the killing of Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo and nine others in Pamplona town.

Manila Regional Trial Court Branch 51 Presiding Judge Merianthe Pacita Zuraek signed the arrest warrant naming Teves among the co-accused.

“After a personal evaluation of the amended information, the court finds probable cause for the issuance of a warrant of arrest,” the judge said in an order dated Sept. 5.

Judge  Zuraek set the arraignment of the accused on Oct. 4. Murder, frustrated murder and attempted murder cases were filed against Teves and four of his cohorts on Aug. 18.

The court noted that Teves is known for his aliases Arnie, Big Boss, Big Boss Idol, Idol and Kalbo. Also included in the charges are Angelo Palagtiw, a certain Jie Ann/Gie Ann described as the sister of Palagtiw and helicopter pilot Capt. Lloyd Garcia II.

A fifth individual who was also included in the charges, Nigel Electona has already been detained and the court issued a commitment order transferring him from the Manila City Jail to Camp Bagong Diwa in Bicutan.

The five will be joining eleven other suspects already indicted in July. They are Winrich Isturis, Joric Labrador, Benjie Rodriguez, Eulogio and John Louie Gonyong, Joven Javier, Dahniel Lora, Romel Pattaguan, Jhudiel Rivero, Rogelio Antipolo Jr. and Marvin Miranda.

They are facing murder, frustrated murder and attempted murder charges for the commando assault on Degamo’s residence during a social welfare handout program in March.

The attack occurred a month after the Supreme Court (SC) affirmed Degamo’s victory over Henry Pryde Teves in the gubernatorial race in Negros Oriental.

Earlier, Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla said in a briefing he was confident that the court would issue an arrest warrant against Teves.

“This is a waiting game, you have to be patient, you have to wait for the results properly, at [and] we have to give time to the institutions that are in charge of their different responsibilities to look at the Teves case and to cast their judgment on these matters, especially with the issuance of warrant of arrest if ever,” he said.

Remulla also said he still believes that Teves is in Timor Leste, and continues to travel to Cambodia and Thailand.