Case filed vs. PDEA agent’s “killer”
Ria Mae Y. Booc, Mylen P. Manto (The Freeman) - November 5, 2013 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - After almost two months of  investigation, the Cebu City Police Office yesterday filed murder charges before the Cebu City Prosecutor’s Office against the man tagged responsible for shooting dead Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency-7 Public Information Officer Jessie Tabanao.

Police identified the assailant as Arnel “Aye” Solivar, 35, a resident of A.C. Cortes St., Mandaue City, based on the investigation conducted by the Task Group Tabanao.

“We are ready to file the case against the gunman who killed Tabanao,” said Sr. Supt. Noli Romana, CCPO director.

While the case is in the court, police will continue their investigation to identify the mastermind of  the killing pursuing work-related angle as the motive of the crime.

“Work-related ang motive and linked to the previous cases ni Jessie,” Romana said.

City Intelligence Branch chief, Chief Insp. Romeo Santander, revealed that Solivar was involved in a series of  shooting incidents in 2005 and 2006 as an associate of Aristotle Aves, Alpha Kappa Rho’s alleged hitman.

“Considered marksman ni siya (Solivar) kay elite na sa firearm unya left-handed pud,” Santander said in a press conference, adding that Solivar uses a 9mm pistol.

Aves himself was the main suspect in at least 17 fraternity-related killings in Cebu City, of which only 13 resulted to charges in court. Six are murder charges while four are frustrated murder charges. Two are for attempted homicide and one is a homicide case. He was also implicated in some robbery cases.

However, Richard Buscayno, former President of the Akrho-Philippines, denied Solivar is a member of their fraternity.

“Hindi ko kilala ‘yan at hindi ‘yan member,” Buscayno said in a phone interview.

Santander said they received reports that Solivar was involved in illegal drugs but they have yet to validate that information.

With the development of the case, Katrina Tabanao, Jessie’s wife, thanked CCPO.

“Big development ang filing sa case but dili ni enough nga makabayad sa pain, pero confident ko nga madakpan ra ni siya,” she said.

Two weeks ago she just gave birth to their second child, their first is now nine years old.

Tabanao was shot dead by a lone assailant on a motorcycle on Escario St., Barangay Kamputhaw, Cebu City, last Sept. 14, 2013 while on board his vehicle bound for Barangay Apas to fetch his wife.

The case was filed around 4 p.m. yesterday.

In her affidavit, Katrina said that on the said date she was together with Dennis Tanoc on board a taxi in Apas. The two were on their way to attend the victory celebration of The FREEMAN City Hall reporter Jessa Agua, who had just won the Miss Press Freedom.

However, while they were heading to the Capitol, she said she was informed by Tanoc that her husband had been shot dead. As proof, she said Tanoc han-ded his cellular phone to her where he saw her husband’s picture.

“I immediately reques-ted the driver to proceed to the aforesaid place. When we arrived, I saw people circling the crime scene and I came to know that my husband was already dead by the responding ERUF personnel due to the gunshot wounds on his back,” the affidavit read.

SPO1s Buenaventura Ursaiz and Rowena Gabutan and five other policemen issued a joint affidavit that all their evidence and three witnesses pointed to the assailant.

“After discreet intelligence and investigation, we established that Solivar, who stood about 5’6”, medium built, in his early thirties, and residing in AC Cortes St., Mandaue City, is an Akrho hit-man and once closely associated with Aristotle Aves, who was arrested by the elements of CCPO for several criminal offenses sometime in 2008,” the joint-affidavit read.

According to the witnesses, they were able to identify the gunman although he was wearing a helmet.

“While the driver was wearing his crash helmet during the whole incident, we can still remember his face and what he looks like and can recognize him when we see him again in person or if we shown a picture of him, because his crash helmet was open in front and his visor was raised upwards,” they said. (FREEMAN)



  • Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
Login is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

or sign in with