MANILA The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Tuesday recommended the awarding of the reward money, worth PHP50 million, to Emmanuel Judavar, a former security aide of Daraga Mayor Carlwyn Baldo, who provided vital information on the killing of Ako Bicol partylist representative Rodel Batocabe last December.
Albayalde said Judavar became the key witness in identifying the mastermind and gunmen behind the killing of Batocabe by providing information that confirmed the political angle lead, which was then being pursued by investigators.
Actually, siya ang nagwitness kaya siya ang tatanggap ng lahat doon sa ibibigay na reward. Nagsimula naman kasi sa kanya lahat yun (He was the first witness so he will get the reward. It all started with him). Remember, yung involvement niya (his involvement) was planned in August (last year), then humiwalay siya sa grupo ni Mayor Baldo (he left Mayor Baldo's group). Wala na siyang kinalaman doon sa pagplano kay (He has nothing to do with the plan on the killing of the) late Congressman Batocabe, Albayalde told reporters Tuesday after the command conference held in Camp Crame.
The provincial government of Albay and Batocabe's colleagues at the House of Representatives have raised PHP30 million as reward to whoever can provide information to help solve the case.
President Rodrigo R. Duterte has increased the bounty from PHP30 million to PHP50 million for the arrest of the mastermind behind the killing of Batocabe.
Judavar had disclosed the August 2018 plot to kill Batocabe with a funding of PHP5 million from Baldo, claiming that he backed out due to personal differences with Baldo before the Batocabe assassination was carried out.
Judavar also revealed the names of the six suspects who carried out the attack. All of them confessed to their participation in the killing of Batocabe and corroborated the former's testimony.
Albayalde said he has yet to hear from the groups and the people who raised the PHP50 million reward money for the case.
There is still no guidance from the Department of the Interior and Local Government as to who would get the reward money, Albayalde said.
But I am sure that it could be the witness (Judavar) since everything started from him, he added.
Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) director, Chief Supt. Amador Corpuz, meanwhile, supported Albayalde's recommendation.
Judavar turned himself to the police after Batocabe's killing on Dec. 22, 2018. Batocabe was conducting a giftgiving activity in Daraga when attacked.
He also identified Christopher Naval, another trusted aide of Baldo, as one of the possible suspects in the killing.
Judavar's confession has resulted in the surrender of Naval who admitted taking part in the assassination.
Naval identified all the other suspects namely Henry Yuson alias Romel, Rolando Arimado alias RR, Ammanuel Rosello alias Boboy, Jaywin Babor alias Jie and Daniel Muella alias Manoy Dan.
He said Yuson and Arimado both served as the gunmen, Rosello and Babor as the drivers of the getaway motorcycles and Muella as a lookout.
All the suspects have surrendered to the police and had all tagged Baldo as the brains behind the killing.
Corpuz said they have already gathered the affidavit of the six suspects who surrendered to the police.
Nasa amin na po lahat (ng affidavit) (We have obtained all affidavits), and we are looking at getting additional statements, Probably coconspirators. As the PNP chief said, we are looking for others na may kinalaman doon sa itong plano na ito (who are involved in this plan), he said.
In particular, Corpus said they are investigating someone who allegedly funded and helped Batocabe's killers escape to Camalig town.
Corpuz said they have yet to identify if the said person of interest is also an employee of Baldo, who was tagged as the mastermind of the assassination.
Cases of double murder and multiple frustrated homicide were filed in Albay against Baldo and the six others.
Batocabe was supposed to run for mayor of Daraga in this year's midterm elections. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency