Marlene Aguilar faces raps for hiding son Jason Ivler


Posted at Jan 18 2010 11:41 PM | Updated as of Jan 20 2010 03:06 AM

Marlene Aguilar faces raps for hiding son Jason Ivler 1
Marlene Aguilar (2nd from left) is fingerprinted at the National Bureau of Investigation headquarters on Monday, January 18, 2009.

MANILA, Philippines - Marlene Aguilar-Pollard is to be charged with obstruction of justice after prosecutors indicted her for allegedly hiding her son, murder suspect Jason Ivler, inside her home.

Ivler, 26, was arrested inside his parents' home at Blue Ridge village in Quezon City on Monday morning by National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) special action units.

He was wanted for the murder of Renato Victor Ebarle Jr., son of Palace official Renato Ebarle Sr.

In previous statements, Aguilar repeatedly denied that she knew her son's whereabouts. She claimed that Ivler had escaped to the United States.

Police had filed a complaint against Aguilar before the Quezon City Prosecutor's Office for violating Presidential Decree No. 1829, which penalizes people who harbor wanted criminals, conceal evidence, or give false information to prevent law enforcement agents from apprehending suspects.

Alessandro Jurado, a fiscal at the city prosecutor's office, said there was sufficient evidence to file a charge against Aguilar.

Aguilar's case will be brought before the Regional Trial Court on Tuesday. The case can then be raffled by Thursday.

However, Aguilar said she will be posting bail, set at P12,000. "I will post bail. I won't comment because my son is in critical state," said Aguilar, who submitted to a formal inquest at the fiscal's office.

Aguilar, the sister of folk singer Freddie Aguilar, is a self-published book author.

She is married to economist Stephen Pollard, a British national and consultant at the Asian Development Bank.

Jason Ivler is Aguilar's son from a previous marriage to an American.

Repeated denials

Marlene Aguilar faces raps for hiding son Jason Ivler 2
Jason Ivler, the primary suspect in the murder of a Palace official's son, is wounded and captured in a police raid inside his mother's home.

The NBI's intelligence reports revealed that Ivler had been hiding at his mother's house in Blue Ridge for more than 2 months.

Police had searched Aguilar's home twice before, but failed to locate the suspect.

The NBI reportedly had strong suspicions that Aguilar was hiding Ivler after they found the suspect's car parked at the house of his uncle in Marikina.

At around 6 a.m. on Monday, the NBI raided Aguilar's home and found Ivler hiding inside a concealed room under the stairs. Ivler shot at police and wounded 2 agents before he was subdued.

Aguilar was arrested, along with 2 male household help, after her son's capture.

Atty. Angelito Magno, head of NBI's Special Action Unit, said Aguilar deliberately misled police when she said her son was out of the country.

"She kept on saying that she received an e-mail that he is in Hawaii already," Magno told reporters in a briefing.

"Second, [Marlene] said things like, 'I am very cooperative. I let you into my home because I have nothing to hide.' Even as her son was shooting at us and we were shooting back, she said, 'I didn't know [Jason] was inside the house'," Magno added.

Police had a standing order for Ivler's arrest after he shot dead 27-year-old Ebarle Jr. in November 2009 following a traffic altercation along Santolan Road in Quezon City.

Ivler, a former U.S. infantryman, was involved in a road rage case 4 years ago.

He was charged with reckless imprudence resulting in homicide for killing Undersecretary Nestor Ponce Jr. in 2004 after Ponce accidentally hit his car.

No search warrant

Marlene Aguilar faces raps for hiding son Jason Ivler 3
In November 2009, Marlene Aguilar asked her son to surrender to authorities. Police believe Aguilar has been hiding Jason Ivler inside her home since last year and lied to authorities about it.

Aguilar, clad in a nightgown, denied that her son was at home at first and tearfully protested against the NBI's presence at their home.

She also questioned why police had no search warrant when they raided the house. (Watch exclusive ABS-CBN footage of Ivler's arrest here.)

"Wala naman kayong search warrant. Andiyan na siya--andiyan na kayo sa kuwarto ko, may mga hawak kayong baril. Pasensiya ka na ha, ngayon lang ako nagf-freak out," Aguilar was quoted as saying in a videotape of the raid.

(You don't have a search warrant. You're there in my room carrying guns. I'm sorry, I'm freaking out just now.)

Aguilar later led police into Ivler's bedroom to show that it was empty. However, NBI agents noticed the airconditioning unit was on and that the adjacent bathroom had a wet floor and damp towel--indicating the recent presence of an occupant.

They found the suspect hiding inside a tiny storage room that was walled-up on all sides. Ivler, who was carrying a baby armalite and caliber .45 pistol, opened fire on police and started a 10-minute shootout.

Ivler was wounded in the clash, along with 2 police agents, and was brought to the Quezon Memorial Medical Center (QMMC) for treatment.

According to the QMMC's latest medical bulletin, Ivler is "stable but guarded."

NBI agents are standing guard over the patient, who is reportedly handcuffed to his hospital bed. Ivler is currently recuperating from a 3-hour surgery.

'State of shock'

Marlene Aguilar faces raps for hiding son Jason Ivler 4
Police handcuff Marlene Aguilar following her son's arrest. She is to be charged for obstruction of justice.

Marlene Aguilar-Pollard appeared distraught when she was escorted to NBI headquarters in handcuffs.

"At the moment, I am in a state of shock. I heard that my son is fighting for life and death. And so I really don't have anything further to say," she said.

Though glib with media, she was videotaped crying several times as she spoke with her lawyer, Atty. Alexis Medina.

Medina declined to comment while investigations are ongoing.

On November 21 last year, Aguilar was also videotaped in a tearful state when she addressed a crowd at the Cultural Center of the Philippines. In her speech, she asked her son to surrender to authorities.

She also apologized to Ebarle Jr.'s family for her son's actions.

"Jason, I say if you are guilty, I beg you with all my heart to surrender yourself and face this," Aguilar had said.

NBI agents, however, insist Aguilar knowingly hid her son from police all these months and fed them false information about his whereabouts.

Though she could have acted based on her natural instinct as a mother to protect her child, Magno said she hampered another family's quest for justice.

Police are currently investigating whether Ivler's stepfather Stephen Pollard, who lives in the same house as Aguilar, is criminally liable.

Pollard is exempt from criminal prosecution due to diplomatic immunity. Reports from Maan Macapagal, Apples Jalandoni and Atom Araullo, ABS-CBN News.