DOJ okays indictment of 4 in US Marine's slay

By Ina Reformina, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 29 2012 11:46 AM | Updated as of Nov 30 2012 01:23 AM

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Justice (DOJ) has recommended the indictment of 4 men for the fatal stabbing of US Marine George Anikow outside an upscale subdivision in Makati City on Nov. 24.

A 5-page resolution dated November 27 and signed by Assistant City Prosecutor Gilbert Alcala recommended murder charges against Juan Alfonso Abastillas, 24, Crispin dela Paz, 28, Osric Cabrera, 27, and Galicano Datu III, 22, for the death of George Anikow.

Anikow was stabbed to death following a brawl between him and the respondents at Rockwell Drive corner Kalayaan Avenue, Makati City at 4 am on the said date.

The respondents were allegedly irked when the victim interfered between them and security guard Jose Rommel Saavedra who tried to check on motorists who wanted to pass through Rockwell Center at the time.

Anikow reportedly strongly tapped the rear left side of the SUV Volvo that carried the respondents.

Based on the resolution, a verbal confrontation ensued between the victim and suspects; the victim allegedly suddenly attacked and punched one of the respondents that resulted in a fistfight.

The resolution states that the respondents thereafter "took turns in mauling him (Anikow)."

"Based on the evidence presented, there is no dispute that on the date and time complained of, S/G Saavedra positively and categorically identified all the respondents as the persons responsible in attacking and mauling the victim prior to his death.

"There being no ill motive shown on the part of the said witness to testify falsely against respondents, this office finds no reason to doubt his positive and categorical statements and the same should be given credence," the resolution read.

The DOJ also pointed out that the qualifying circumstance of abuse of superior strength was present in the killing.

"[I]t has been clearly shown that there was indeed a notorious inequality of forces between the victim and respondents... and one of them, armed with a knife, cooperated in such a way that they took advantage of their numerical strength and age in simultaneously assaulting, attacking, and stabbing the unarmed and helpless victim," the resolution read.

Among evidence presented against respondents was the CCTV footage of the incident.