Lawyer handling drug cases slain in Bacolod City

Gilbert Bayoran - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — A lawyer handling drug cases was gunned down in Bacolod City yesterday.

Initial investigation showed Rafael Atotubo, 62, was in front of his house in Barangay 23 when he was shot by motorcycle-riding men wearing helmets and black jackets.

Atotubo was hit in the head and was declared dead on arrival at the Bacolod Doctor’s Hospital.

Senior Inspector Rey Tolosa, Police Station 4 chief, said the killing could be work-related as he confirmed that Atotubo was known for handling drug cases.

Tolosa said probers are securing footage of closed-circuit television cameras at the scene to identify the assailants.

8 suspects shot dead

Meanwhile, eight suspects were killed in Calabarzon and Bulacan in the past two days as the government continued its campaign against illegal drugs.

Renato Certeza, 34, alias Rico, alleged leader of a drug ring operating in Binangonan and neighboring areas in Rizal, engaged anti-narcotics agents in a shootout in Barangay Tagpos at around 12:30 a.m. yesterday, Chief Superintendent Edward Carranza, Calabarzon police chief, said.

Jhon Carlo Maglanque and an alias Jhun were shot dead when they fired at law enforcers in Barangay Poblacion, Baliwag and Guyong, Sta. Maria, respectively, in Bulacan on Wednesday.

In Laguna, police said Lito Labongray and Christian Sayasaya engaged law enforcers in a shootout in Barangay Bucal, Calamba.

Joel Buarao, an alleged member of the Banzon crime gang, reportedly drew his gun when he sensed he had sold shabu to undercover agents in Los Baños.     

Police said Buarao was ranked first on the list of ”high-value” drug personalities in Laguna.

An alias Rambo was gunned down after he and his unidentified companion refused to pull over at a checkpoint in Barangay Sungay West in Tagaytay City and opened fire at around 1:40 a.m. also yesterday.

Rambo’s companion managed to escape.

Rodgie Anter was also killed in an alleged shootout with anti-narcotics agents in Barangay Poblacion, Tanauan, Batangas on Wednesday.

Police said sachets of shabu, marked money and the guns used by the fatalities were recovered.

Gang members fall

In Negros Occidental, packs of shabu with an estimated street value of P500,000 and a 9mm pistol were recovered during a raid on the house of alleged drug ring member Cydee Bajande, 37, in Barangay Guinhalaran, Silay on Wednesday.

Bajande and his wife, Jonah were arrested.

Also arrested was Ronald Onggo, another member of a drug ring in Negros Occidental and operating in Hinigaran town. – Non Alquitran, Ramon Efren Lazaro, Raymund Catindig, Ed Amoroso, Emmanuel Tupas

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