MANILA - Four years since trial began, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and private complainants terminated the presentation of its case against former Datu Unsay, Maguindanao Mayor Andal Ampatuan, Jr. and 27 others in connection with the Nov. 23, 2009 bloodbath now known as the Maguindanao massacre that left 58 people, mostly journalists, dead.
In an 8-page manifestation filed with the Quezon City Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 221, the special court dedicated to hear the multiple murder cases, the prosecution rested its case against the following:
Unsay, Police Chief Insp. Sukarno Dicay,
Zakaria Akil aka Quago Akil,
PO3 Gibrael Alano,
SPO2 Badawi Bakal,
PO3 Ricky Balanueco,
PO1 Michael Macarongon,
SPO1 Samad Maguindara,
PO1 Abdulbayan Mundas,
PO1 Badjun Panegas,
PO1 Amir Solaiman,
PO1 Datu Jerry Utto,
Nasser Esmael aka Nassrudin Esmael,
Salipad Tampogao aka Tato Sampogao,
Police Supt Abusama Mundas Maguid,
Ibrahim Kamal Tatak aka Thong Guiamano, and,
Rakim Kenog aka Rakim Amil.
The presentation of evidence against them was completed in spite of pending petitions filed before the Court of Appeals (CA), and motions filed with the trial court, mostly dealing on the defense's opposition to the testimony of prosecution witnesses and admission as state witnesses of several accused.
This, after the prosecution and defense agreed to the conditional presentation and testimony of these witnesses pending the resolution of all the petitions and motions.
However, the cases against 76 other accused have not been terminated just yet.
Key members of the Ampatuan political clan have been charged for the carnage, including clan patriarch former Maguindanao Governor Andal Ampatuan, Sr. and former Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Governor Zaldy Ampatuan.
The casualties were part of a convoy of female members of the rival Mangudadatu clan who were supposed to file the certificate of candidacy for Governor of Esmael Mangudadatu; the journalists were covering the story.
The massacre has been described as the single deadliest attack on journalists in history.