09 November 2011

Ramgen probe reset; new witnesses surface

Nothing came out of the scheduled preliminary investigation into the murder of Ramgen Bautista Revilla Tuesday as international law enforcement authorities tried to verify the whereabouts of his sister and one of the suspects in the case, Ma. Ramona Bautista, alias “Mara.”
Chief Inspector Enrique Sy of “Task Force RAM” said the preliminary investigation by the ParaƱaque City Prosecutor’s Office did not push through because no lawyer stood in behalf of suspects Michael C. Altea and Roy Francis Tolisora.
“Hindi dumating ’yung abogadong dalawang respondent na sina Michael Cruz Altea and Roy Francis Tolisora kaya ’di natuloy ang preliminary investigation (The lawyer for two of the respondents did not show up, thus, the preliminary investigation was cancelled),” Sy said.
Even though the preliminary investigation was cancelled, police arrived with Revilla’s personal assistant Ronald Ancajas, who earlier told police about the Revilla siblings’ alleged arguments over money maters, to submit his sworn affidavit.
Along with Ancajas, police presented a new witness who will testify against the suspects – Altea, Tolisora, Ramona and brother Ramon Joseph.
Sy identified the new witness as Lloyd Comeda, an alleged gunman who was also hired to do the job.
The preliminary investigation has been reset Wednesday, November 9, at 2 p.m.
Meanwhile, Ramon Joseph, tagged by police as the alleged mastermind of his brother’s murder, waived his right to undergo preliminary investigation.
His lawyer Dennis Manzanal insisted that the arrest of his client is illegal and therefore, he should be released.
Sy said that they are still waiting for the resolution of City Prosecutor Lea Roma regarding the motion to release RJ.
The case has already been raffled by Executive Judge Brigido Artemon Luna II and will now be handled by Branch 274, under Judge Fortunito Madrona.
It can be recalled that the same court was previously handled by Judge Amelita Tolentino, who handled the Vizconde massacre case.
As for Ramona, “no warrant of arrest has been issued yet,” said Sy.
The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has already requested assistance from the International Police Organization (Interpol) in Ankara to locate where she is.
However, Interpol Ankara can only verify if she really is in Istanbul, Turkey and cannot apprehend her since no warrant of arrest has been issued yet.
Other Interpol-member countries have been informed about the search if Ramona and were asked to alert the National Bureau of Investigation of ever she enters their jurisdiction.
Philippine Center for Transnational Crime (PCTC) Executive Director Felizardo Serapino Jr. said the NBI request also seeks verification of the address of Ramona’s husband in Pinartepe, Naallesi, Istanbul, Turkey.
The PCTC said the Interpol will also help verify her immigration status in Turkey. (With a report from Leonard D. Postrado)




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