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Cebu News

Archival kin, NBI-7 director say; No qualms on relief of HPG-7 execs

Niña S. Abenoja and Mylen P. Manto - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu City Councilor Nestor Archival and National Bureau of Investigation Regional Office-7 Director Max Salvador yesterday expressed their contentment over the relief of four Highway Patrol Group-7 officers tagged in the ambush-slay of the councilor’s brother, lawyer Noel Archival.

Councilor Archival said he has expected the relief of HPG-7 chief Senior Superintendent Romualdo Iglesia, Senior Inspector Joselito Lerion, Chief Inspector Eduardo Mara and Senior Police Officer 4 Edwin Galan.

Convinced that the Highway Patrol Group-7 is behind the ambush-slay of his younger brother, Archival said he and his family had requested for the relief of the four police officials.

“Right after na amo nang gi-file, well actually ang NBIang nag-file, nag-expect na mi ana kay mao man na’y supposed to be the standard operating procedure. We are hoping na mu-proceed na ang investigation,” he said.

He said he had no qualms about the reassignment of the HPG-7 officers to their national headquarters in Camp Crame, seeing it as the office to be held accountable in case these officers will disappear.

For his part, NBI-7’s Salvador said that relieving the four police officers from their present assignment is a standard operating procedure of any organization.

“That is good. Their presence is guaranteed when the court needs them,” Salvador said.

The city councilor recounted that a document obtained by the NBI reveals that these HPG-7 officials allegedly extorted P8 million from his brother’s client.

He said his family is also convinced that they have a strong case against the four, emphasizing on the evidence the NBI and the Task Force Archival have gathered so far such as the vehicle reportedly used in killing the lawyer and his companions and the bullet recovered from the car that reportedly matched with the slugs found at the crime scene.

“Karon ang nag-suffer kami iyang pamilya at the same time iyang mga anak. Take note, his children are still young, and grabe ilang pagtuo na si Noel buhi pa. So sakit kaayo para namo,” lamented the councilor.

Archival further lamentedthe uncertain fate not just of his brother’s children, but that also of the lawyer’s driver and security aides, whose school fees the dead lawyer used to shoulder.

“Daghang affected but sila, igo ra nila gi-summary execution,” he said as he advised other lawyers to continue to be vigilant.

Not unless the suspects are convicted, Councilor Archival said they will not stop from seeking justice for the death of his younger brother.

“Take note, si Noel abogado, klaro nga inila not only in Cebu, but in Manila and Mindanao. Sayunon lang nila pagpatay. How much more sa mga tawo na ordinary. And take note, how much more sa uban pud nga mga lawyer. Ig-on ra gihapon na nila and this crime will continue, certainly, if kining kaso ni Noel dili masulbad,” the councilor said.

On April 16, 2014, the HPG Human Resource and Doctrine Development Division headed by Senior Superintendent Rey Bucatan ordered the reassignment of the four HPG-7 officials.

Superintendent Rommel Ochave of the Intelligence Division was designated as HPG-7 officer-in-charge, replacing Iglesia.

Meanwhile, lawyer Gloria Dalawampu in a text message to The FREEMAN confirmed that their law office is representing the Archival family.

Dalawampu yesterday afternoon filed a formal entry of appearance as counsel for the slain lawyer Archival and his family before the Cebu Provincial Prosecutor’s Office.

Provincial Prosecutor Pepita Jane Petralba issued Memorandum No. 2014-27 naming prosecutors Petronio Elesterio, Jay Paradiang, Rustom Presas, Jr., Ferdinand Collantes and Al Rey Ouano as members of the panel to investigate on the multiple murder and frustrated murder filed by the NBI-7 against Lerion, Iglesia, Mara, Galan, Police Officer I Alex Bacani and some unidentified persons.

Petralba said the panel has 60 days to resolve the complaints.

Reportedly, Archival and his companions were on their way to Cebu City from a hearing in Dumaguete City when they were ambushed in Barangay Coro, Dalaguete town at around 1 p.m. on February 18, 2014.

Other fatalities were Alejandro Jayme and Candido Miñoza. Only Paolo Cortes, an on-call assistant of Archival survived during the attack. — (FREEMAN)

ALEJANDRO JAYME AND CANDIDO MI ARCHIVAL BARANGAY CORO CAMP CRAME CEBU CITY CEBU CITY COUNCILOR NESTOR ARCHIVAL AND NATIONAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION REGIONAL OFFICE CEBU PROVINCIAL PROSECUTOR CHIEF INSPECTOR EDUARDO MARA AND SENIOR POLICE OFFICER COUNCILOR ARCHIVAL HIGHWAY PATROL GROUP
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