Vinluan: Nothing wrong with arming lawyers

By: Delta Dyrecka Letigio September 04,2019 - 05:10 PM

Cebu City Police Director Gemma Vinluan. | CDND File Photo

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Two days since the attempt on his life, lawyer Inocencio Dela Cerna have not talked to the police to issue his official statement on the ambush.

Police Colonel Gemma Vinluan, chief of the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO), urged Dela Cerna to visit their office to issue the needed statement that will help the police hasten their ongoing investigation on his ambush.

“Hindi siya nakikipag cooperate. Maaring normal na isafe-keep nya muna ang sarili nya, matanggal siya sa traumatic experience, pero magbigay siya ng pangalan sa amin. Kahit man lang mga allegations nya, at least masisimulan na imbestigahan. Pero kung wala kang ibinibigay, parang ang hirap naman isolve ng crime na yan,” said Vinluan.

(He is not cooperative. I find it normal that he will prioritize his safety, recover from the traumatic experience, but he also has to give us names of possible suspects. He has to raise even allegations so we can start our investigation with something. If he will not give us anything, it would be very difficult for the police to solve his ambush.)

Vinluan said that they even had to ask Dela Cerna to submit his sports utility vehicle to forensic investigation on Tuesday, September 3. They continue to wait for the outcome of the investigation.

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Atty. Regal Oliva, president of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Cebu City Chapter is asking lawyers to learn self-defense and if needed, carry guns, in order to protect themselves.

Vinluan said that she does not see anything wrong with arming lawyers provided that they carry licensed firearms.

“I am in favor of arming lawyers if that is their choice. It is better to have (guns) and not need it that to need (it) but not have it,” she said in an interview this morning, September 4.

Vinluan said that Dela Cerna owned at least three guns, but all of these have expired licenses.

While she does not intend to confiscate these guns to give consideration to the threat on his life, Vinluan asked Dela Cerna to immediately process for the renewal of his licenses.

Based on their initial investigation, police found at least nine bullet holes on Dela Cerna’s vehicle, four of which can be found on the driver’s side.

Vinluan said they are having difficulty in investigating the ambush try because closed circuit television (CCTV) footage which they secured from nearby establishments needed to be enhanced for clarity.

For this reason, Vinluan said they “really” need Dela Cerna’s statement to help the police identify and locate the gunman and the driver of his getaway motorcycle.

In a text message which he sent to reporters this morning, September 4, Dela Cerna expressed his gratitude to the police and other law enforcement agencies for their swift response to his ambush.

“Good day! I thank the Cebu City Police Office led by COL Gemma Vinluan for being on top of this unfortunate incident. Kudos also goes to the Highway Patrol Group led by Capt Sedigo for immediately securing me. Thank you NBI Director Cimafranca for conducting its own investigation motu proprio. And finally to the CIDG 7 led by COL Amancia who is spearheading the investigation,” said Dela Cerna’s text message. | dcb



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TAGS: ambush, CCPO director, guns, Investigation, statement

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