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‘Riot’ was to silence drug probe witness -- CIDG

  • Written by Jester P. Manalastas
  • Published in Top Stories
  • Read: 178

NOT the usual riot but an incident intended to stop a high-profile inmate from testifying in the House hearing on drug trafficking in the New Bilibid Prisons (NBP).

This is what  the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) said it discovered in its investigation into the September 28 melee inside Building 14 of the NBP which caused the death of a convicted drug lord and injury to others.
    
Police Supt. Francisco Ebreo, head of the fact-finding team of the CIDG, said that there was no riot but only two separate stabbing incidents involving convicted high-profile inmates.
    
Ebreo read the affidavit of Tomas Donina, an inmate who stabbed high-profile inmate Jaybee Sebastian, in which the convict said that he was ordered by a former colleague in the  Navy to stop Sebastian, at all cost, from testifying against Senator Leila de Lima, a former secretary of justice.
    
“Donino averred that he took the opportunity to stab Jaybee Sebastian in order to prevent him from testifying in the House inquiry,” Ebreo said.
    
“Ayon sa kanyang affidavit, may kumausap sa kanya na dating kasamahan sa Navy na gawan niya ng paraan mapatahimik at mapatay para hindi siya makapagsalita laban kay Ma’am Leila de Lima (tungkol) sa droga sa NBP,” he added.
    
However, Ebreo clarified that Donino’s affidavit could not prove that De Lima was involved in the stabbing incident.
    
“There’s no strong links of evidence that the person he mentioned is really involved in the said plan,” Ebreo told the House justice subcommittee on correctional reforms.
    
Sebastian was critically wounded and confined at the hospital for several days but was later able to testify before the House hearing on the proliferation of illegal drugs inside the NBP.
    
According to his testimony, drugs like shabu was easily peddled inside and outside the NBP by no less than the convicted drug lords. He claimed that money from the sales was given to De Lima and through her bodyguard Ronnie Dayan.
    
From his end, he was able to deliver a total amount of P10 million to De Lima’s camp.
    
In the second stabbing incident, convicted drug lord Tony Co died while two others -- Peter Co and Vicente Sy -- were critically wounded.
 
CIDG probers reported that Co and Sy were attacked by former police officer Clarence Dongail and Edgar Cinco.
    
The CIDG however did not file charges against the attackers but instead recommended that the Bureau of Correction investigation section sue the culprits.
 
The failure of the CIDG to file charges and conduct a deeper investigation irked some lawmakers.