In this file photo, police presented the suspect in the murder of Subic businessman Dominic Sytin.
Philippine National Police/Facebook Screengrab
Court convicts gunman in killing of Subic trader Dominic Sytin
Kristine Joy Patag ( - November 20, 2019 - 5:32pm

MANILA, Philippines — An Olongapo court on Wednesday convicted the gunman in the killing of Subic businessman Dominic Sytin who was killed in November 2018.

Olongapo Regional Trial Court Branch 72 found Edgardo Luib guilty of the  murder of Sytin and is sentenced to serve reclusion perpetua or up to 40 years in prison.

Judge Richard Paradeza also convicted Luib on frustrated murder of Efren Espartero, Sytin’s bodyguard.

READ: Suspect in murder of Subic businessman arrested

Dominic was the founder and chief executive officer of United Auctioneers Inc., an auctioneer of used trucks and heavy equipment in Subic. He also owned ACEA Subic Bay Resort. 

He was murdered in front of Lighthouse Hotel inside Subic Bay Freeport Zone, Olongapo City on Nov. 28, 2018.

Police named the victim’s brother Dennis Sytin, the current chief operating officer of UAI, as the alleged mastermind. Also tagged in the case is Ryan Rementilla alias Oliver Fuentes, who is Dominic’s former employee.

Luib pleaded guilty

Luib pleaded guilty to murder and frustrated murder and told the court that he killed Dominic because “Dennis Sytin hired him.”

He said Rementilla introduced him to Dennis.

According to the ruling, Dennis told Luib that “Dominic was supposed to file a rape case against him, and that Dominic Sytin refuses to give his share in their company,” so he wanted the businessman dead.

“From the evidence adduced, the court is satisfied that accused Luib was the one who shot and killed Dominic Sytin. The evidence also shows that it was also accused Luib who shot and seriously wounded Efren Espartero after the latter tried to protect and defend Dominic Sytin and himself,” the ruling read.

The court said that it found no irregularity in Luib’s extrajudicial confession, issued while in police custody, where he admitted the killing.

Dennis and Rementilla remain at large.

In his counter-affidavit filed before the DOJ during preliminary investigation, Dennis defended himself from the allegations and accused Luib of being “motivated by self-preservation and the instinct to protect Oliver [Fuentes], who is his childhood friend and kumpadre.”

“Luib has strong motives to fabricate and deliver a false and general narrative which contains none of the vital details by which the truthfulness of his statements against me can be tested,” Dennis said.

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