MANILA – Businessman Ferdinand Guerrero, one of the accused in the mauling case involving actor Vhong Navarro, finally spoke up, claimed his innocence as he insisted that "somebody got raped" the night the incident happened.
Guerrero, who is a business partner of co-accused Cedric Lee in a black sand mining operation in Cagayan, was supposed to file his counter-affidavit last March 7, but filed it instead before the Department of Justice (DOJ) just last Friday, March 14, because he received the subpoena late.
"Buzz ng Bayan" sources said Guerrero, along with co-accused Lee, Zimmer Raz and Jed Fernandez, are members of a group called Bear Family.
Sources said the members of the Bear Family, which includes other personalities, get together in travels, parties and prayer meetings.
Guerrero is one of the men seen in a CCTV footage released by Forbeswood Heights Condominium in Taguig City where Navarro got beaten up after allegedly raping model Deniece Cornejo.
While he confirmed he is one of the men caught in the CCTV footage, Guerrero denied allegations that he helped Lee maul Navarro.
"I vehemently deny all the charges against me… Because I wasn't even in the room," he told reporters. "You saw me on CCTV, I got lost. I came out. Then, I saw them. I was even smiling. Is that the image of a man whose intention is to hurt somebody? I don't think so."
Guerrero explained that he just happened to be in the area near Forbeswood Heights Condominium when Lee called up and told him to go there.
"I hang out in that area all the time," he added.
He said that he was even shocked upon seeing the "It's Showtime" host beaten up by Lee and his group.
"I was shocked. Then, when I found out about the rape case, [I felt] disgusted," he said.
Guerrero even defended Lee and said he would've beaten Navarro all the same had he been in the room.
"What he did was right. I would've done the same thing," he said. "We are good people. We are decent people. Hindi kami nang-aapi."
"Hindi lumalaban si Cedric Lee. Cedric Lee wants justice. He could do that for any man or woman. You know, if we see somebody get beaten up in the street, we'll help the person," he added.
Guerrero said he is confident that he will be able to prove his innocence because he is on the side of the truth.
Asked about what is the truth, he said: "Somebody got raped. What is true is that somebody got raped."
Guerrero also claimed that other people have approached him, telling that they've been molested by the actor.
"I've heard a lot of stories. People come up to me and tell me they've been molested," he said. "I'm not saying that to be true. What I'm saying to be true is I was approached and people have been telling me that Vhong did this, Vhong did that. You know, that's probably hearsay, but there might be some truth to it. I'm not saying that he did it. But I'm saying that I'm hearing this from a set of people."
Meanwhile, Navarro's camp said they will still have to see how Guerrero answered the allegations in his counter-affidavit.
"Kung inilagay niya iyon sa kanyang counter-affidavit, tingnan natin kung paano niya pinabulaanan ang mga salaysay ng aming kliyente. Pero sa aming paninindigan, talaga namang mahirap ikaila na nandoon siya sa lugar na 'yun nu'ng araw na nangyari ang krimen," Navarro's camp said.