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Cops eye business in Samar ex-mayor's slay

MANILA, Philippines - A former mayor of Motiong town in Eastern Samar may have been killed in his rented room in a Mandaluyong City slum Saturday night because of his money-lending business, police said yesterday.

Investigators recovered a “blue book” containing the names of persons who owed money to Constancio Pacanan Jr. Eastern Police District (EPD) director Chief Superintendent Miguel Laurel said they would question all of them.

Laurel said a certain Delfin, seen drinking with Pacanan in his rented room at the Welfareville Compound just before his murder, was questioned by the local police but he denied having something to do with his death.

Delfin’s name appeared in the blue book, said Laurel.

Senior Superintendent Armando Bolalin, Mandaluyong City police chief, said two men were seen rushing out of the house where Pacanan had rented a room at around 11 p.m. but it was not clear whether Delfin was one of them.

Bolalin said they are looking into the business angle in Pacanan’s killing but noted that they are also checking other possible motives, such as robbery and politics.

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Bolalin said they recovered a magazine loaded with bullets for a 9mm pistol, and cartridges for a .22 caliber pistol at the crime scene. Pacanan was a licensed holder of a 9mm Taurus pistol.

Bolalin said Pacanan’s empty wallet and cell phone were recovered by responding policemen.

“We also gathered four glasses, three forks, and a number of plates in the victim’s room,” he said.

He ordered that the pieces of evidence and Pacanan’s room be checked for fingerprints.

Pacanan’s widow arrived yesterday and Bolalin said investigators are taking her statements with regards to her husband’s background and possible enemies.

“What we wanted to learn is why he rented the eight-square meter room in the squatter’s area when his background, being a town mayor, says that he could afford to rent affordable apartments,” said Bolalin in an interview.

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