US Marine tagged in murder of transgender Pinoy

Posted at Oct 13 2014 05:42 PM | Updated as of Oct 14 2014 11:25 PM

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MANILA - A US Marine has been identified as a possible suspect in the killing of a transgender Filipino in Olongapo City.

The victim, identified as Jeffrey Laude, was found dead in a motel in Olongapo City on Saturday. CCTV footage showed Laude was last seen with a white male foreigner before his death.

Police said Laude's body bore strangulation marks.

Reports said a US Marine has been detained onboard the amphibious assault ship Peleliu pending the result of the investigation.

The suspect is said to be assigned to the Second Battalion, 9th Marines, out of Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.

The infantry unit is deployed to the Philippines as part of a joint training exercise.

Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario says he has met with US officials and both countries are working closely on the case.

The US Embassy in Manila has also expressed condolences to Laude's family and vowed to cooperate in the investigation.

Bayan Secretary General Renato Reyes, meanwhile, says Filipino authorities should lead the investigation and that the US Marine should be in Philippine custody.

Visiting Forces Agreement Commission head Eduardo Oban, meanwhile, said no American ship will leave the Philippines pending the probe.

American troops are currently in the country as part of a joint training exercise.

ANC TOP STORY, October 13, 2014