Findings to be released after NBI investigation
MANILA, Philippines - The chief of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Tuesday said it would be premature to conclude that the January 6 killing of 13 men in Atimonan, Quezon was an ambush.
A Philippine National Police fact-finding committee report on the incident was formally turned over to the NBI Tuesday afternoon. However, the Philippine Star revealed the report's alleged findings in a news story Monday.
"I would call it premature," NBI Director Nonnatus Caesar Rojas told reporters in a press briefing at Camp Crame Tuesday afternoon.
"I would rather that the final conclusion, whether shootout 'yan or rubout or whatever we call it, ay idedeclare na lang siguro pagkatapos ng masusing imbestigasyon at pagaaral rin ng NBI."
"Kami ay talagang nagmamadali dito kasi we know the necessity. Ngunit kasabay nito ang pagiingat din na dapat ang resulta ay base talaga sa mga ebidensya at testimonies ng witnesses. Dapat credible at efficient ang aming resulta," he added.
Likewise, Interior and Local Government Secretary Manuel "Mar" Roxas II said the fact-finding report quoted earlier on news reports were probably just drafts and not yet the final findings of the PNP committee.
"May mga initial reports na kino-quote pa nga 'yung fact-finding report na ito pero maaari na mga draft 'yun at 'di authorized 'yun dahil ngayon lang po natapos itong fact-finding report na ito."
Roxas said he has already ordered PNP chief Alan Purisima to conduct an internal investigation on who leaked the information to the media even before it was forwarded to the NBI.
"'Di naman po makatarungan, 'di tama na 'di pa nga po final itong mga findings na ito ay nagkakaroon na ng speculations," he said.
Turnover of evidence
The NBI director said with the turnover of the fact-finding report, they are also expecting the turnover of all the pieces of evidence gathered from the crime scene.
"Umaasa kami na kasama dito sa turnover ng committee report ay ang pag-turnover din ng lahat ng ebidensya katulad ng mga baril, slugs, vehicles," Rojas said.
Purisima said he has already instructed the chief of the crime laboratory in Quezon to turn over all the physical evidences under their custody to the NBI.
Marantan refuses to submit to physical exam
Meanwhile, Roxas said Supt. Hansel Marantan, the regional intelligence officer who reportedly tipped the Quezon police about the alleged gun-for-hire group led by Vic Siman, has refused to submit to questioning.
He added that Marantan, the lone officer injured in the shooting incident, has also refused to undergo physical examination.
"'Di siya sumagot sa mga katanungan, 'di siya nagpainspect ng kanyang mga wounds at pati 'yung mga slugs na narecover sa katawan niya ay 'di rin niya pinarelease. Kaya pinapayo ko po kay Supt. Marantan na sumailalalim po kayo, kung ayaw niyo sa PNP, sumailalim po sana kayo sa NBI process," Roxas said.
"'Di po maganda sa katayuan ninyo na 'di kayo sumasama dito sa transparent at patas at pantay na prosesong ito para malaman ang buong katotohanan," he added.
Meantime, the DILG secretary also clarified reports that the PNP has been uncooperative in the investigation.
"May kumakalat na report na 'di raw nagcocooperate ang PNP sa imbestigasyon. 'Di po totoo ito. Ang unang pag-imbita sa mga tauhan ng PNP ay bukas, alas-diyes ng umaga pa," he said.
Rojas, likewise, said: "Kinukumpirma ko rin ang sinabi ni Mar Roxas na nagcocooperate ng lubos, nagpaparticipate ang mga kawani ng PNP dito. Walang katotohanan ang mga spekulasyon na 'di sila nagbibigay ng salaysay."