When he was accused of rape, Billy (not his real name) turned to lawyer Noel Archival for help.
Billy, a marshal of the Department of Justice accused of raping a 21-year-old lady witness 36 times inside a government safehouse last year, didn’t regret his choice.
The rape complaint filed against him was eventually dismissed by the prosecutors’ office as Archival defended him.
Billy said he was saddened and shocked upon learning that Archival was killed in an ambush in Dalaguete town, south Cebu last week.
“Dako gyud siya nga kawad-on sa legal profession. Samtang ang uban nga abogado balibaran ka, si Atty. Archival andam gyud motabang (He’s a big loss to the legal profession. While some lawyers refuse to accept particular cases, Atty. Archival was ready to help),” Billy said.
He said he personally chose Archival to defend him, knowing the lawyer’s capabilities and wit.
“In securing witnesses, we marshals usually attend court trials. I knew Atty. Archival. He’s a good and intelligent lawyer. But what separated him from other lawyers was his charisma,” Billy said in Cebuano.
“When I asked him to be my lawyer, Atty. Archival said ‘okay, okay, No problem with that.’ And so I narrated to him everything and gave him all the evidence,” he added.
Billy was earlier charged with rape before the Cebu City Prosecutors’ Office.
Archival sought the inhibition of all Cebu City prosecutors to avoid branding the fiscals as being biased, especially since Billy may have met several city fiscals during hearings.
Archival’s plea was granted by Cebu City Prosecutor Nicolas Sellon.
The case was transferred to Mandaue City Prosecutor Felixberto Geromo who dismissed the case for insufficiency of evidence last October 2013.
Billy said he was relieved and glad when his name was cleared.
He said he last met with Archival three weeks ago in a Cebu City court.
“He was joking when we last met. He told other lawyers that I was the DOJ marshal who was accused of rape. He said ‘This is Billy. He was accused of rape because he’s handsome like us,” Billy said.
In response, Billy and the other lawyers laughed at what Archival said.
Now that his name is cleared, Billy wants that justice will likewise be rendered to Archival.
“I condemn the assassination of Atty. Archival and his companions. They don’t deserve to die in a brutal way,” he said. Archival and his three companions, got ambushed on their way to Cebu City last Feb. 18.
Archival just came from a court hearing in Dumaguete City when unidentified persons on board two Hilux pickups ambushed Archival and his companions when they reached barangay Coro in Dalaguete town, southern Cebu.
Archival and his aide Candido Miñoza died on the spot due to multiple gunshot wounds they sustained.
Archival’s driver Alejandro Jayme was brought to the hospital but was declared dead on arrival.
Another aide, Paolo Cortes, survived the attack although he sustained a gunshot wound in his left arm.