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Chiongs to check Paco in Spain

() - November 9, 2009 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - The parents of rape-murder victims Marijoy and Jacqueline Chiong said they will be going to Spain to find out if one of those convicted for the crime, Juan Francisco “Paco” Larrañaga, is really jailed by the Spain authorities.

“Moadto g’yod mi unya Spain aron pagsuta kon gipriso ba g’yod nila si Larrañaga human gihatagan og pagtugot nga adto i-detain sa ilang nasud,” said Thelma Chiong, mother of the victims.

The 32-year-old Larrañaga, a relative of the Osmeña family in Cebu, was sentenced to death by lethal injection in 2004, but was saved by President Gloria Arroyo’s abolition of the capital punishment three years ago. Instead of death penalty, his punishment was lowered to life imprisonment.

Early last month, he flew to Europe after the Department of Justice approved his transfer to a prison in Spain to serve the remainder of his life sentence.

Larrañaga was still 19 years old when he and six others were found guilty of the case for the abduction, rape and killing of the Chiong sisters in July 16, 1997.

While Marijoy’s body was found at the bottom of a cliff in Sitio Tan-awan, Guadalupe, Carcar, Jacqueline’s body remains missing.

According to Thelma Chiong, national head of the Crimes Against Violence, she is afraid that while in Spain, Larrañaga will be given a chance by the authorities to be freed.

“Supak g’yod unta kaayo mi nga adto sa Spain prisoha si Paco kay basin og buhian ra siya didto. Mao nga amo g’yod unya nga adtoon kon tinuod ba nga gipriso siya,” Chiong said.

Larrañaga was allowed to be detained in Spain because of the country’s agreement with the Spanish government.

The Philippine Senate has ratified a prisoners’ exchange treaty with Spain in 2007. The treaty provides for the return home of the convicted citizens of each other’s country.

Larrañaga, is considered a half-Spanish because he is the son of former Spanish Basque pelotari Manuel Larrañaga and Margarita Gonzalez, the granddaughter of the late President Sergio Osmeña Sr. — Rene U. Borromeo/WAB (THE FREEMAN)

AGA CHIONG CRIMES AGAINST VIOLENCE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE JUAN FRANCISCO LARRA MANUEL LARRA NTILDE SPAIN THELMA CHIONG
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