June 15, 2024

The Insider News

Direct from the source

DOJ junks murder raps vs 17 cops in Bloody Sunday raid

By Justine Rich Talusan

THE Department of Justice (DOJ) junked the murder complaint filed against 17 police officers implicated in the  infamous “Bloody Sunday” on March 7, 2021 that left a labor leader and some activists dead.

According to government prosecutors, the evidence against the accused was insufficient for an indictment. 

Cleared were Lt. Elbert M. Santos, Lt. Shay Jed Sapitula, Senior Master Sgt.Hector R. Cardinales, Master Sgt.Ariel P. Dela Cruz, Staff Sgt. Jemark Sajul, Cpl. Ernie A. Ambuyoc, Cpl. Mark John A. Defiesta, Cpl. Arjay Garcia, Cpl. Caidar Dimacangun, Cpl. Bryan Sanchez, Cpl. Ericson Lucido, Pat. Jayson Maala, Pat. Juan Plite, Pat. Jonathan Tatel, Pat. Prince Benjamin Torres, Pat.  Jaime Turingan, and Pat. Lopera Rey PJ Dacara. 

“We lament the demise of Emmanuel Asuncion. However, complainant (Liezel, wife of the slain labor leader) and the evidence she submitted failed to discharge the obligation to prove the existence of a crime and identify the perpetrators thereo,”  said the  DOJ resolution.

“In the absence of proof, there could be no probable cause to charge the respondents,” it added. 

On March 7, 2021, authorities conducted simultaneous raids in Cavite, Laguna, Batangas and Rizal that resulted in the death of nine activists and the arrest of scores of others. 

Reports showed that authorities were able to recover explosives, several firearms, and subversive documents during the said operations in Calabarzon. 

The simultaneous raids were carried out by the Philippine National Police, together with the Armed Forces of the Philippines, to serve search warrants for loose firearms and illegal possession of explosives.