THE murder of Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo and eight others is no laughing matter as multiple deaths and equally-serious crimes should not be taken lightly, Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla said yesterday.
The DOJ secretary issued the statement in response to Congressman Arnulfo “Arnie” Teves Jr.’s alleged comment that his terror tag was “funny” and that the Justice Department’s investigation, including the Senate hearings, was like a “circus.”
“The highest ranked local official was killed in his own home while serving his constituents by highly- trained gunmen recruited for that purpose. Was what happened to Gov. Degamo funny in any way?” Remulla asked.
According to Remula, people were terrorized and living in fear until Teves was in legal custody.
“We are guarding against that capability to wreak havoc and destruction on people’s lives,” he added.
During a Senate committee hearing investigating the assassination of Degamo, Remulla announced that the Department of Justice (DOJ) would seek to designate Teves as a terrorist under the Anti-Terror Law, in addition to criminal and administrative charges against him.
“Sec. Boying Remulla pointed out that the DOJ will initiate moves before the Court of Appeals for the proscription of suspended Congressman Arnie Teves as a “terrorist” pursuant to the Anti-Terror Law or Section 4 of R.A. 11749,” Atty. Mico Clavano , Justice Assistant Secretary and spokesperson in a message to reporters, said.
Clavano said Teves’ alleged involvement in multiple murders, as well as the recruitment of gunmen and use of high-powered firearms, falls under the Anti-Terror Law.