No proof yet of foul play in Banacon drug raid
THERE is still no evidence to establish whether there was any foul play involved in the death of John Jason Montes during a police operation on Banacon Island, Bohol last May.
Leo Villarino, chief investigator for the Commission on Human Rights (CHR-7), also mentioned during yesterday’s 888 News Forum at Marco Polo Plaza that Dr. Ludivino Lagat, who led the autopsy, apologized for his early statement that there was no overkill that happened.
“Dr. Lagat stated it based on the number on the wounds but it does not mean that the autopsy report has this conclusion,” Villarino told reporters.
He said they won’t make any conclusion until they have solid evidence.
Montes was killed on May 28 and tagged as a cohort of Rowen “Yawa” Secretaria, who was identified among the top drug personalities in Cebu.
Villarino said Montes sustained three gunshot wounds, one of which proved fatal.
Susana and Victor, the parents of young Montes, believed there was foul play involved and that there was overkill during the operation to get Secretaria.
Villarino also confirmed that last month, Montes’s parents brought one more witness to his office to support their claims.
The CHR-7 monitored 195 drug-related killings in Central Visayas based on news reports.
Villarino said the number consisted of both legitimate police operations and vigilante killings since May to September 5 this year.
“There is really an increase compared to the same period last year. The past administration had seldom drug-related deaths,” Villarino said.
Of that number, 44 have subpoenas issued to different operation units but these were not complied with.
Of the 44, only 14 had filed complaints since some families declined to pursue their cases.
“We have to convince them and realize that it is all for the good for everyone that they don’t need to be afraid and it will take time. We also have to be realistic. We cannot place a deadline on witnesses to come out. We cannot tell them that we have a deadline for you,” he said.
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