Rebellion complaint vs widow of slain Maute leader up for resolution

Ina Reformina, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 14 2018 12:26 PM | Updated as of Sep 14 2018 01:53 AM

MANILA - The rebellion case against a female member of the Maute clan is now submitted for resolution, after the police and military told the Department of Justice no additional evidence will be submitted to bolster their complaint. 

Senior Assistant State Prosecutor (SASP) Peter Ong told reporters Najiya Dilanggalen Karon Maute, also known as ‘Najiya Sultana Dilangalen Karon,’ opted not to submit a counter-affidavit in Wednesday’s scheduled hearing to refute the allegations against her. 

Respondent is the wife of Mohammad Maute, a member of the Maute local terror group who died in the battle of Marawi City. 

“It’s her turn now to submit counter-affidavit and [her camp] decided not to file kasi nga may initial decision kami at inquest level na insufficient yung evidence,” Ong said, referring to the DOJ’s earlier ruling ordering Maute’s release from detention for further investigation of the case. 

Najiya Maute was arrested on January 23 at Barangay Rosary Heights 3, Cotabato City by virtue of an arrest order issued by the Department of National Defense dated June 5.

In a 7-page inquest resolution signed by Ong, SASP Alexander Suarez, and Assistant State Prosecutor Josie Christina Dugay, the DOJ said there was no sufficient evidence to warrant Maute’s indictment and the case is no longer inquestable because the alleged acts contained in the police and military’s complaint happened 7 months ago. 

The DOJ ordered a full blown preliminary investigation into the rebellion charge to allow Maute to submit a counter-affidavit and other defenses. 

“Complainant PNP-CIDG claims that on the basis of the statement of Martino Elyana, respondent Najiya Maute should be indicted for rebellion for aiding the Maute-ISIS group who participated in the public uprising and took arms against the government by forcibly taking over Marawi City. On two separate occasions, respondent Najiya Maute’s aid to the armed group was in the form of giving them food.

“However, aside from the statement of Martino Elyana… complainants did not present any other evidence against respondent,” the inquest resolution read. 

The DOJ explained that Maute’s act of bringing food and being with her husband “are not overt acts of rebellion.” 

The Maute group’s siege on Marawi City led President Rodrigo Duterte to issue Proclamation No. 216 on May 23; the battle for control of the Islamic City dragged for five months.