2 suspects in Abiad ambush charged

Emmanuel Tupas - The Philippine Star
2 suspects in Abiad ambush charged
Police officers escort suspected guns-for-hire Jomari dela Cruz (right, inset) and Eduardo Legazpi II at Camp Karingal in Quezon City yesterday following their arrest for the ambush on photojournalist Rene Joshua Abiad.
Michael Varcas

MANILA, Philippines — The two suspects in the ambush on photojournalist Rene Joshua Abiad, who are in police custody, have been indicted for murder and frustrated murder.

The Quezon City prosecutor’s office has found probable cause to file criminal charges against Eduardo Legazpi II and Jomari de la Cruz.

“The cases have been filed in court,” Quezon City Police District (QCPD) director Brig. Gen. Nicolas Torre said in a Viber message yesterday.

Legazpi and De la Cruz are facing complaints for murder and three counts of frustrated murder in connection with the ambush on Abiad and his family in Barangay Masambong, Quezon City on June 29.

Abiad’s nephew died in the attack and three of his relatives were wounded.

Police are still hunting down six more suspects, including a former barangay chairman in Pasay known only as Nanad, who was tagged as the alleged mastermind of the hit job on the photojournalist.

Torre said they could apprehend the suspects even without a warrant of arrest.

He said Nanad allegedly contacted two middlemen, identified through their aliases as Greg and Juan, for the services of a gun-for-hire ring for the attack on Abiad.

According to Torre, Nanad reportedly wanted Abiad dead as he believed the photographer was the one leaking information about his alleged illegal activities.

Last week, police recovered one of the vehicles, a Toyota Vios with license plate NFE-5678, used by the suspects in San Leonardo, Nueva Ecija.

Probers said the car’s license plate was different from the one recorded on closed-circuit television footage during the ambush.

Torre said the car is owned by the wife of one of the suspects, known only as Oca, a dismissed police officer, who was reportedly the one who drove the vehicle during the attack.

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