Petition seeks fine on Arboleda
MANILA – Alain Katigbac, the fan attacked by Wynne Arboleda of the Burger King (BK) Whoppers, filed a criminal complaint against the veteran player as well as versus another BK cager, Mark Yee.
The 31-year-old Katigbac, a businessman, filed the case of physical injuries against Arboleda and Yee, according to his affidavit obtained by ABS-CBN News.
The complaint was filed at the Office of the City Prosecutor in Quezon City Thursday.
Arboleda attacked Katigbac in the 2nd quarter of the BK vs Smart-Gilas Pilipinas game last Friday. The Whoppers won, 115-105.
Katigbac was reportedly cursing at Arboleda. This prompted the cager to kick the fan and punch him four times.
It has been six days since the incident happened, yet Katigbac said in his affidavit: “I now endure not only physical suffering, but mental anguish, uncontrollable fright, serious anxiety, a besmirched reputation, wounded feelings, moral shock, social humiliation, and other similar emotional and psychological injuries because of the respondents’ [Arboleda and Yee] actions.”
The Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) suspended Arboleda until the end of the 2009-2010 season. He will reportedly lose about P2.7 million due to the suspension.
Yee, meanwhile, has not received any sanction. It was earlier reported that Arboleda was the only player who mauled Katigbac.
Katigbac admitted in his affidavit that he booed and cursed at Arboleda during last Friday’s game.
After Arboleda committed a foul on a driving JV Casio, Katigbac said he “joined the fans in booing him” and shouted, “‘Arboleda, matanda ka na hindi mo na kayang abutan si Casio!’”
Arboleda was assessed his 1st flagrant foul “a few plays after” when he elbowed Casio in the face.
The fans started booing again. Katigbac then said: “‘Wag mong pilayan, mga pang international game natin yan!’”
While he did shout at Arboleda twice, Katigbac said he also “cheered and applauded for Burger King as an acknowledgement of several good plays they had run.”
After sitting on the bench for 3 minutes because of the flagrant foul he committed, Arboleda went back to the court in the 2nd quarter.
“After just a few sequences of plays, he again committed a 2nd flagrant foul on a driving Mac Baracael when he went under him as he was in the air which resulted in Baracael crashing to the floor and being hurt,” recounted Katigbac.
The fans began booing and jeering.
“I initially just sat down and told my friend that Arboleda was just hurting players of the opposing team in the court,” he went on. “At this point, I felt deeply concerned for Baracael who had just been critically injured from a gunshot wound sometime last year.”
Arboleda reacted upon hearing the referee’s call on his 2nd flagrant foul. Katigbac said he clearly heard Arboleda say to the referee. “P*****-*** mo ref!” The fans booed once more.
“This was the only time that I really got incensed at Arboleda’s behavior as I was deeply shocked and disturbed at Arboleda’s boorish and disrespectful behavior towards an official of the game who was merely doing his duty,” said Katigbac.
He then shouted at Arboleda, “‘P*** bakit sinahod mo, p*** bakit sinahod mo!’”
“All of a sudden and while I was seated, the respondents, together with their other teammates, started to walk towards me,” related Katigbac.
He said Arboleda jumped over the partition and attacked and kicked him on the abdomen. He said he felt “tremendous pain” in his mid-section that is why he just ducked and covered his head.
He said he did attempt to retaliate. However, the rage of Arboleda and Yee reportedly continued.
Katigbac said he absorbed blows on his temple and other parts of his head.
While he still curled and held on to his head, Katigbac said Yee allegedly hit him with his knees and told him, “‘Cheer ka kasi ng cheer e!’”
While he was being escorted out of the Araneta Coliseum by security personnel, Katigbac said he saw Arboleda intending to go after him. The veteran cager was stopped by security.
Arboleda has taken full responsibility and expressed regret over the incident in a formal apology issued the day after the incident.
He apologized to the PBA, BK, the league’s fans, and Katigbac.
“Much to my regret, I lost my composure. I realize that this type of behavior by some PBA fans should be considered by players as part of the game and that these usually challenge the emotional capacity of players and other athletes.”
Arboleda stated that his action was “provoked by the incessant name-calling and cursing uttered by the said fan particularly to me each time I was within hearing distance.”
“The continuous barrage of invectives and insults towards my person, my family and my team were just too difficult to withstand,” he noted.
He then made a suggestion: “There should be ways devised to appeal to both players and the public as to the proper decorum and respect we should accord each other.”
Katigbac, however, feels that Arboleda’s apology was insincere.
“Despite his apology and expressions of regret, there have been news reports that have come out last October 21, 2009 stating that Arboleda intends to file case/s against me for depriving him of his income,” he noted, “when in truth and in fact the loss of income is solely attributable to Arboleda’s own boorish and disrespectful treatment of the game, his dirty style of playing and his unwarranted and unjustified attack on my person.”
For Katigbac, the reported plan of Arboleda to file a case against him does not show the cager’s remorse.
“His public apology is just a publicity play to gain some unjustified sympathy for himself,” declared Katigbac.
Meanwhile, an online petition is calling on the PBA and BK management to donate Arboleda’s withheld P2.7 million salary to charity.
The petition “Burger King Inc Should Donate Suspended Arboleda's 'lost income' to Survivors of Recent RP Typhoons” was written and created by Gang Badoy of volunteer group Rock Ed Philippines.
“We would like to respectfully and reasonably request Burger King and/or the Philippine Basketball Association or whoever can give the directive over this situation – to donate the amount set aside for the now-suspended athlete – Mr. Wynne Arboleda to any existing relief and rehab operation set up to assist survivors of typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng,” the petition read.
The petition currently has 313 signatures.
“This is not a request for EXTRAS Burger King, Inc - we are aware that this is not a real loss to your profits because the amount has been earmarked and promised to Mr. Arboleda before he was suspended anyway,” the petition added.