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CA voids DOJ 2nd panel's findings on Ortega murder

MANILA, Philippines - The Court of Appeals has nullified the findings of the Department of Justice's second panel that re-investigated the murder case against former Palawan governor Joel Reyes and his brother Mario, implicating the two in the killing of environmentalist Gerardo Ortega.

In a radio interview, Reyeses legal counsel, Ferdinand Topacio, said the CA's Special 5th Division declared null and void the findings of the second investigating panel created by the DOJ regarding the Ortega murder case.

"So iyong findings ng unang panel na nagpapawalang-sala sa magkapatid na Reyes among other persons, iyon dapat umiral ngayon," Topacio said.

Topacio said he has no communication with the Reyes brothers who have reportedly left the country and are now in hiding.

"Ang aking komunikasyon lamang po ay kay Vice governor Fems Reyes na may-bahay po ni dating Palawan governor Joel Reyes," he said.

Topacio also urged his clients to surface with the latest developments on the case so they could plan their next legal action.

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"It is our hope na kung nakikinig sila ng radyo, nanonood ng telebisyon kung saan man sila naroroon ay malaman po nila na nagkroon po kami ng isang tagumpay sa Court of Appeals at makipag communicate po sa amin upang magawa po namin ang dapat gawin at sila po ay tuluyan na puwedeng lumantad," he said.

The government has raised a P2-milion bounty for the capture of each of the Reyes brothers.

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