MANILA – The estranged husband of murdered Ruby Rose Barrameda has dropped a bombshell during his first media interview by revealing that she had a third party in the course of their marriage.
In his exclusive interview with “TV Patrol World,” Manuel Jimenez III, who is accused of masterminding the killing of Barrameda, insisted that he and Barrameda were happy and getting along well.
In fact, he said, after she gave birth to their eldest daughter, Marga Ysabel, 9, he financially supported her schooling. He claimed that their problems began only after she went back to school.
“Ang major na pinag-awayan namin is iyong nahuli ko siya na may third party,” he said.
Jimenez, who belongs to a prominent family, showed TV Patrol World a letter Barrameda purportedly wrote after he discovered her alleged affair. In the letter, Barrameda had apologized and promised that she would change.
In a apparent attempt to prove her sincerity, Barrameda purportedly vowed to go straight home from school, leave her cellphone at home and avoid hanging out with friends. He said he had forgiven her.
He claimed that his estranged wife remained unfaithful to him but he chose to ignore her alleged infidelity. The last straw though was when he discovered that their eldest child saw her with another man, he added.
“Nakita mismo ng panganay ko na may ka-holding hands iyong mommy niya. At iyong sinabi niya sa akin iyon, talagang napakahirap tanggapin,” he said.
After that incident, he said the two of them rarely talked to each other anymore up until she left home in 2007. He said she left after a heated argument over a missing diamond earring.
“Hindi kami nagkaka-text, nagtatawagan magmula ng umalis siya ng January. Wala kaming any form of communication except kapag dumadalaw siya sa mga bata,” he said.
He said by then Barrameda had already filed a petition seeking to get the custody of their two children.
Months later she was reported missing by her family. Barrameda’s body was discovered stuffed in a drum filled with cement and then placed inside a cemented steel case two years later.
Suspect-turned-state witness Manuel Montero pinpointed the steel case's location at the Manila Bay.
Montero claimed that she was killed on orders of Jimenez’s father, Manuel Jr., and uncle, Lope. Later, Montero also linked Barrameda’s husband to the murder.
The Jimenezes have however repeatedly denied the allegations. They also maintained that the body found was not Barrameda’s.
“Ang tingin ko po maaaring buhay pa po siya. Bilang asawa niya, meron po tayong gut feel kung siya po talaga iyong katawan na nakuha,” Jimenez said.
He added that he decided to come forward in order to clear things up and salvage the reputation of his family.
Barrameda’s sister, actress Rochelle Barrameda, admitted that her sister had an affair with another man but she maintained this was not reason she left her marriage.
“That was nine years ago pero sabi ko nga napatawad niyo iyong kapatid ko. Huwag niyang isisi iyon sa nagyari noong 2007. Sinaktan niya ang kapatid ko. Ilang beses niyang pinagka-ano niya ang ulo ng kapatid ko sa cabinet at na-witness iyon ng anak nilang si Marga,” Rochelle said.
Rochelle said she believes her sister was killed because of the custody battle. She said she and her family will prove this in court when they present their evidence.
The Barramedas' legal counsel, lawyer Rowena Guanzon, meanwhile, made this appeal: “Kung may paninira pa sa pagkatao niya while she was alive, tigilan na kasi nga she’s not in any position to defend herself. She’s dead. Ruby Rose Barrameda is dead and buried, murdered.” Report from Karen Davila, ABS-CBN News