Bloody Sunday: NBI files murder raps vs 17 cops

Robertzon Ramirez - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has filed murder complaints before the Department of Justice (DOJ) against 17 Philippine National Police personnel involved in the so-called ”Bloody Sunday” in Nasugbu, Batangas in March last year.

The DOJ said the complaints were in connection with the death of activists Ariel Evangelista and his wife Ana Mariz.

The agency said it would start the preliminary investigation.

A DOJ panel created under Administrative Order 35 Task Force, which handles cases of extrajudicial killings, conducted a case buildup with the assistance of the NBI.

The AO 35 panel is also investigating the death of Melvin Dagsinao and Mark Bacasno, members of an urban poor advocacy group.

It had earlier recommended the filing of murder charges against the 17 policemen over the killing of Emmanuel Asuncion, local coordinator of Bayan-Cavite chapter.

Nine activists who allegedly resisted arrest were killed in simultaneous police operations in Batangas, Cavite and Rizal.

Bayan secretary-general Renato Reyes said the filing of the latest criminal complaints should serve as a warning to law enforcers who will allow themselves to be used in extrajudicial killings.

Reyes said the killings were not isolated, but part of a regionwide operation that targeted unarmed activists.

”We await the filing of cases for the other victims of Bloody Sunday. The real masterminds should be exposed along with the judges who issued multiple search warrants that were later used as legal pretext to plant evidence or commit extrajudicial killings,” he said. - Rhodina Villanueva

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