The Department of Justice has formed a panel of three prosecutors tasked to conduct preliminary investigation of the criminal complaint filed against law enforcers involved in the shootout during an illegal drugs operation in Quezon City last February 24.
The DOJ’s Office of the Prosecutor General on Tuesday revealed that a three-man investigating panel has been created to conduct preliminary investigation on the complaint filed by the National Bureau of Investigation against elements of the Philippine National Police and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency involved in the shootout.
“A panel of three was assigned to investigate the PNP-PDEA complaint,” said Assistant State Prosecutor Honey Rose Delgado, spokesperson of the DOJ’s Office of the Prosecutor General (OPG).
“Let’s not disclose to the public their names for security reasons,” Delgado added.
Last September 6, the NBI asked the DOJ to prosecute twelve members of the Quezon City police district and four agents of the PDEA involved in the “mis-encounter” near a fast-food restaurant along Commonwealth Avenue that resulted in the deaths of two policeman, a PDEA agent and an informant.
Named respondents in the NBI complaints were PDEA-Special Enforcement Service (PDEA-SES) agents Khee Maricar Pornobi Rodas, Jelou Juanitez Santiniaman, Jeffrey Panhon Baguidudol, and Romeo Asuncion, and Quezon City Police District-District Special Operating Unit (QCPD-DSOU) members PCPL Alvin Borja, PLT Ronnie Ereno, PCPL Marlon Masiclat, PCPL Ronilo Prepose, PCPL Jason Coranez, PCPL Aries Curit, PCPL Marco Tapanan, PCPL James Dasalla, PMAJ Sandie D. Caparroso, PCPL Raul Christian Zacarias Gandeza, PLT Honey Besas, and PCPL Christopher Alvarez.
The NBI recommended the prosecution of PDEA agents Rodas, Santiniaman, and Baguidudol for homicide for the death of QCPD member PCPL Eric Elvin Garado. Baguidudol was also accused of having falsified official documents.
PDEA agent Asuncion and policeman Borja were recommended criminally charged for the deaths of policeman Lauro De Guzman and PDEA agent Rankin B. Gano, respectively.
The NBI, however, only named as “John/Jane Doe” and has yet to identify who killed the informant identified only as “Untong.”
Attempted homicide was recommended for Santiniaman for wounding policeman Ereno. Attempted homicide was also recommended for the eight other policemen – Ereno, Borja, Masiclat, Propose, Coranez, Curit, Tapanan, and Dasalla — for wounding PDEA agents Martin Matthew Soriano and Baguidudol.
Policemen Caparroso, Gandeza, and Besas were also accused of direct assault with physical injuries, direct assault with less serious physical injuries, and direct assault.
Caparroso was also charged with robbery and conniving or consenting to evasion. His co-respondents in the robbery charge were Gandeza and Besas.
Alvarez, Besas and Erena were named Caparroso’s co-respondents in the allegation of having committed conniving or consenting to evasion.
The shootout prompted Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra to order the NBI to conduct a parallel investigation since the PNP and PDEA decided to conduct their own probe.
However, President Duterte intervened and directed the NBI to be the sole investigating agency.