No gun found during police raid on Boniel’s house
POLICEMEN barged into the three-storey house of Bohol Provincial Board Member Niño Rey Boniel and his wife, Bien Unido Mayor Gisela Boniel on Friday at an upscale subdivision in Barangay Guadalupe, Cebu City.
Senior Insp. Windell Abella of the Regional Special Operations Group (RSOG) said they were looking for a Glock 17 caliber 9 mm pistol with serial number GLT 255, which is registered under Niño, the primary suspect in the death of his wife Gisela.
The search was done on the strength of the warrant issued by Judge Ramon Daomilas of the Regional Trial Court Branch 11 in Cebu City, giving the police a permission to search the Boniel residence in Monterrazas Village, in Barangay Guadalupe, Cebu City.
The search covered the living room and kitchen on the ground floor, masters bedroom and two other rooms on the second floor, and the guest room on the third floor.
But police operatives failed to find the gun or any other material that may have been used in Gisela’s slay.
“The search yielded negative results,” Abella said.
Present during the search was a councilor of Barangay Guadalupe and defense lawyer Gerardo Carillo.
In an interview, Carillo said they were expecting the police to search the couple’s house in Guadalupe and their other dwellings.
“We are actually expecting a search, and perhaps they will also search another house of the accused. We will be prepared as we are prepared today,” he said.
“We just told them to be fair. Whatever they find inside the house, that’s it,” he added.
The couple’s main house is located in Bien Unido town in Bohol where Gisela was elected mayor in 2016, replacing her husband who had served his third term and ran and won as Provincial Board Member of Bohol’s 2nd district.
Carillo said the gun the police was looking for was owned by Niño.
“He has the right to dispose of or sell the same because that is the nature of private ownership,” he explained.
But will they heed the request of the police to surrender the gun?
“The police, I think doesn’t (sic) have the business of asking or demanding for the surrender of a firearm which is privately owned,” he said.
Based on the records of the Police Regional Office in Central Visayas, Nino’s permit to carry a gun expired in December 2015.
Still, Carillo said the police could not just easily confiscate Niño’s gun.
“Even if the license has expired, it doesn’t necessarily mean the state owns the property. It is still a private property. No government can seize a private property without due process and due compensation,” he said.
“If the government wants the gun, they can actually buy it,” he added.
A complaint of parricide was filed against Niño for allegedly killing his wife Gisela and throwing her body into the sea in between Bohol and Cebu last June 7.
Also impleaded in the complaint filed at the Lapu-Lapu City Prosecutor’s Office were eight of Niño’s alleged cohorts – four of whom have already been arrested.
Niño is currently detained at the Fuente Osmeña Police Station stockade in Cebu City. Gisela’s body remains missing despite earnest efforts by technical divers, who comb the seawaters off Caubian Island where her body was allegedly thrown.
Carillo said Niño hasn’t been feeling well in the past few days but has not so far requested to be hospitalized.
“All he wants is fairness and that nothing extralegal will happen while the complaint against him is being resolved,” the lawyer said.
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