MANILA - The 19 policemen tagged in the killing of Albuera Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. were not given special treatment during their arrest, a police official said Wednesday.
"Wala pong special treatment. Kaya nga po ipinaubaya namin sa magiging utos ng korte kung saan po sila maidedetine... They are accused, they are suspects in an incident, and they were treated as such," PNP spokesperson Senior Supt. Dionardo Carlos said in a press conference.
A local court in Leyte on Tuesday allowed Supt. Marvin Marcos and 18 other officers of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) to be detained at the CIDG regional facilities in Tacloban instead of the city's jail.
CIDG-8 has since tightened security at their headquarters, according to the police unit's deputy chief, Chief Insp. Teodulo Armada.
Marcos and his men allegedly shot dead Espinosa and another inmate, Raul Yap, during a predawn search on their detention cells.
Two Senate panels and the National Bureau of Investigation said in separate reports that Espinosa's killing was "premeditated" by the police to cover up their involvement in the illegal drug activities of the mayor.
The slain mayor's son, self-proclaimed drug lord Kerwin Espinosa, testified during a Senate inquiry that Marcos was on his payroll -- an allegation that the officer tearfully denied.
Marcos and his co-accused will be arraigned for murder charges on April 29. -- With a report from Ranulfo Docdocan, ABS-CBN News