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IBP Cebu: Lawyer killings alarming

In less than a month, 2 lawyers killed in Cebu

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram, Paul Lauro - Multimedia reporter and correspondent/CDN Digital | December 17,2020 - 07:07 PM

IBP Cebu: Lawyer killings alarming

This is the pickup truck that Lawyer Baby Maria Concepcion Landero-Ole drove when she was shot dead by unidentified assailants along the highway in Barangay Looc, Danao City at 2:50 p.m. today, December 17, 2020. CDN Digital | Paul Lauro

CEBU CITY, Philippines — In less than one month, two lawyers in Cebu were killed in broad daylight in what groups here called an alarming development.

Police in Danao City confirmed that still unidentified killers shot dead lawyer Baby Maria Concepcion Landero-Ole while she was traversing the highway on her pick-up truck along Barangay Looc, Danao City at 2:50 p.m. on Thursday, December 17, 2020.

Landero-Ole, a resident of Barangay Taboc, Danao City, was rushed to the hospital, but physicians declared her dead on arrival.

Danao City is a third-class municipality located approximately 27 kilometers north of Cebu City, the province’s capital.

The incident occurred barely a month after another lawyer, Joey Luis Wee, was killed by a group of gunmen in front of his law office in Barangay Kasambagan, Cebu City on the afternoon of November 23, 2020.

One of the gunmen tagged behind the killing of Wee, Faustino Edgar Benigno Peralta, was arrested last December 8 in Laguna by operatives from Laguna.

RELATED STORY: Six persons face murder charges for killing lawyer in Cebu City

Lawyer Ria Lydia Espina, president of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines in Cebu province (IBP-Cebu), condemned the death of their member and urged the public to cooperate in helping bring the perpetrators to justice.

“This latest violence adds to the list of numerous unsolved cases of killings in Cebu perpetrated by assassins who remain unidentified… IBP Cebu calls on the public to cooperate in the investigation and share information that may be crucial for the swift resolution of this case and eventual stopping of these vicious acts,” said Espina.

Its sister organization, IBP – Cebu City, also expressed alarm at the rate of lawyers being gunned down here.

“The alarming rate of lawyers being treacherously attacked is something that we cannot take just with a grain of salt,” the group said in a statement.

“We condemn the atrocities being cast against fellow lawyers and we must not allow this system of violence to persist in our midst. We have been nothing but cooperative with all investigations done by authorities. And we will continue to take this high route,”  they added.

IBP-Cebu City also urged fellow lawyers to ‘be their own bodyguard.’

“We need to know protocols of who to call or approach should danger arise. We need to spot “lurking shadows” and report them immediately. We need reforms not only in the agencies of government, more so reforms in the IBP,” they said.

RELATED STORY: Lawyer protection program pushed amid spate of killings

Initial findings from investigators showed that they received reports from concerned citizens of a shooting alarm along the highway in Barangay Looc, Danao City.

Police also quoted accounts from witnesses that men on board a motorcycle fled the crime scene.

Investigators also confirmed that Landero-Ole was the wife of an ex-convict identified as Juanito Ole who was also killed last May 26, 2020 in Barangay Poblacion, Danao City. Ole served time in New Bilibid Prison, a maximum-security penal facility in Muntinlupa City, for drug charges.

However, Police Major Ma. Theresa Macatangay, chief of Danao City Police Station, said they were still conducting further investigations to determine any motive of the attack.

Macatangay also said they were not ruling out any possible angles to shed light on Landero-Ole’s killing.

RELATED STORY: Hot pursuit on for suspect in shooting of ex-convict in Danao City

She also said they would be compiling footage of nearby closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras to determine if the gunman acted alone or was accompanied by others./dbs

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