Cebu City gov’t withdraws legal aid to slain witness’s family

By: Delta Dyrecka Letigio - Multimedia Reporter - CDN Digital | April 23,2021 - 02:12 PM

Cebu City government has withdrawn its offer to help the family of slain witness Ritchie Nepomuceno. In photo are Members of the Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) processing the crime scene where Nepomuceno was killed.

Members of the Scene of Crime Operatives (SOCO) process the site where Ritchie Nepomuceno, 35, was killed by still unidentified gunmen on board a motorcycle on April 19, 2021 in Barangay Basak-Pardo, Cebu City | Photo via Paul Lauro

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Cebu City government will be withdrawing its offered legal assistance to the family of slain Ritchie Nepomuceno, who was one of the major witnesses to the alleged extortion and rape of 11 Sawang Calero policemen (10 of them are alive while one is dead).

This after the police has reported the possible links of Nepomuceno to illegal drugs which the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) uncovered upon further investigation.

The CCPO also said a love triangle angle emerged after they received reports that the victim had an ‘affair’ with a suspected drug lord, who is currently detained in the Cebu City Jail, and also allegedly with Police Staff Sergeant Celso Colita, one of the Sawang Calero policemen who shot himself four hours after Nepomuceno was killed.

READ: CCPO eyes drugs, love triangle in Nepomuceno’s killing

Mayor Edgardo Labella initially offered aid to the family of Nepomuceno since she was a witness to the alleged “atrocities” of the Sawang Calero policemen.

In his announcement on April 21, 2021, he said the city is willing to provide help to Nepomuceno’s family in finding justice and even said that complainants of cases such as these should be protected.

READ: Labella asks Napolcom to investigate Sawang Calero cops, killing of witness

However, in an announcement made by City Legal Officer Rey Gealon on April 23, 2021, the mayor has decided to withdraw the legal assistance previously offered to them due to these alleged illegal drug links.

“Subay niana ang mayor mowithdraw niining iyang pagsupporta ug paghatag nga legal nga tabang niadtong pagkamatay niining Ritchie Nepomuceno. Ug iya nanang ihatag sa kapulisan ang pagpaimbestigar ug pagsulbad sa krimen,” said Gealon.

(With that, the mayor withdraws his support and providing legal aid to the family of the slain Ritchie Nepomuceno. And he has left it to the police to investigate and solve the crime.)

READ: IMEG-7: Criminal charges vs Sawang 11 up to prosecutor, admin raps to continue

The Cebu City government will also allow the police to continue the investigations as deemed appropriate and will no longer conduct its own investigations.

Gealon said the mayor had put his faith on the police to solve the case.


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TAGS: CCPO, Cebu city government, Gealon, Labella, Ritchie Nepomuceno

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