MANILA - The family of slain Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr., should appeal to Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre the downgrading of charges against the cops accused of murder of their patriarch, Senator Richard Gordon said Wednesday.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) has downgraded to homicide the charges and dismissed two counts of murder against members of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) Region 8, led by its chief Supt. Marvin Marcos.
"The family of Espinosa himself should go after him [Aguirre] because that’s what the rules say: the aggrieved party should go after him, appeal to the Secretary of Justice—in this particular case, they can still appeal because he was not the one who signed it," Gordon told ANC's Headstart.
"And if they don't get it, they can go to the Supreme Court, and there's still the Senate," he added.
Gordon, who led a Senate inquiry into the slay, said Aguirre should be accountable for the downgrading instead of pinpointing to his underling, who supposedly penned the resolution.
"Aguirre said 'I’m going to go against my boss, I’m going to file the case'—and the NBI said they’re guilty, and even he said they were guilty. But what does he do? He drops the ball and for that he should be accountable to the public," he said.
"I’m not going to let him get away with it, I’m still giving him a chance because under the rules, he can review, revise…I’m allowing him that respite because I think he should review, revise, amend, modify his position and he can still do that," he added.
Gordon said the Ombudsman, who is constitutionally mandated to investigate and prosecute government officials, should run after Aguirre.
"If she can prove it, this is a stark case of complete negligence or incompetence or ignorance of the law," he said.