MANILA, Philippines -- Supt. Hansel Marantan, the police officer who led the operation in Atimonan, Quezon which resulted in the deaths of 13 men, has finally surrendered his firearm to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Friday.
Marantan surrendered his 9mm Glock pistol to Isabelo D. Silvestre Jr., officer-in-charge of the NBI Firearms Investigation Division.
However, the police officer still refused to give his statement on the controversial encounter between joint police and military forces and alleged members of the Vic Siman gun-for-hire group.
The NBI team, led by Special Investigator 3 Federico Criste, went to the St. Luke's Medical Center-Global City in Taguig before noon Friday to get Marantan's statement on the January 6 Atimonan encounter.
Marantan, the lone police officer injured in the shooting incident, had been confined in the hospital for more than 10 days now.
Criste said Marantan again refused to submit himself to questioning and said he will submit an affidavit to the NBI instead.
"'Yung baril nasa amin na, isinurender na nila for examination," Criste said.
"Negative ang statement pa, magsa-submit na lang ng kaniyang affidavit upon the advise of his counsel," he added.
The NBI medico legal team, meanwhile, has already examined the wounds sustained by Marantan during the encounter.
Criste said the medico legal team has also talked to Marantan's attending physician to get his medical records.
The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Thursday said Marantan has agreed to cooperate with the NBI, the lead agency handling the investigation on the bloody encounter.
Marantan's decision comes a day after the PNP said he may face charges of obstruction of justice and insubordination.
The hospital on Thursday also turned over to the NBI the bullet slugs that allegedly hit Marantan during the Atimonan, Quezon clash.
The legitimacy of the police operation has come under question amid allegations that Marantan was engaged in a jueteng turf rivalry with Siman.
Marantan has repeatedly denied that the gun battle was a rubout. However, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said Thursday morning she is certain that the encounter was not a shootout. - With reports by Maan Macapagal, ABS-CBN News and Dexter Ganibe, radio dzMM