'This is our son:' Family won't stop 'Reynaldo' funeral

Jamaine Punzalan. ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 13 2017 09:11 AM

PNP dropped plan to seize body, says PAO

MANILA - The funeral of the boy believed to be 14-year-old Reynaldo De Guzman will push through Wednesday after his family rejected police findings that the body they had claimed in Nueva Ecija was not their son's.

Police last week said DNA sample from the body did not match samples taken from the parents of the slain teen.

Operatives from the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) on Tuesday visited Reynaldo's wake, angering the boy's father, Eduardo Gabriel, who mistakenly thought the cops wanted to take the body.

A CIDG official spoke with De Guzman and assured him that they only wanted to request for additional DNA tests and not forcibly take the body.

A spokesperson for the Philippine National Police, however, told reporters that the body must be seized right away since DNA results claimed the cadaver was not Reynaldo's.

Speaking to ABS-CBN News Wednesday, Gabriel insisted the body was his son's since it had markings distinct to Reynaldo, as certified by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).

"Iyung bangkay na kukuhanin nila, anak ko po iyan... May katunayan naman ang medico-legal ng NBI na sa akin talaga iyan, na anak po talaga namin iyan. Lahat ng mga palatandaan, andyan po sa katawan niya," he said.

(The body they want to seize is my son's. A medico-legal officer of the NBI certified that he was really my son, our son. All his distinct markings were there.)

PNP chief Director General Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa has also promised that the body would no longer be seized, according to the Public Attorney's Office (PAO), which represents the Gabriel family.

"Nakipag-ugnayan po tayo kay General Bato na nasa seminar. Sabi niya, kung ayaw naman ng magulang, hindi pipilitin. Nakipag-ugnayan din po tayo sa deputy niya na 'pag wala siya ay inaasahan niya, 'di na nga raw kukuhanin," PAO chief Persida Rueda-Acosta told DZMM.

(We have coordinated with General Bato, who is at a seminar. He said the parents would not be forced to give up the body. We also coordinated with his deputy, he said the body will no longer be taken.

Reynaldo and 19-year-old Carl Angelo Arnaiz went missing after they left their homes in Cainta, Rizal on August 17.

Arnaiz was reportedly killed in a shootout with police in Caloocan City after allegedly attempting to rob a taxi driver. The taxi driver however claimed Sunday that the supposed shootout was "scripted."

Meanwhile, the body claimed as Reynaldo's by his family was peppered with stab wounds and found floating in a creek in Gapan, Nueva Ecija.

A funeral Mass will be held for Reynaldo before he is laid to rest at the Pasig Public Cemetery.

His family said they have no plans to call for justice for their son at the burial. Gabriel also declined to surmise who was behind the boy's killing.

The family, who had been placed under the Witness Protection Program, will be brought to a safe house after the funeral.With a report from April Rafales, ABS-CBN News