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Amistad was no cop killer, says lawyer

By: Ador Vincent S. Mayol, Norman V. Mendoza February 22,2016 - 10:31 PM

PO2 Brando Maraña of Police Station 3 demostrated based on witnesses where PO3 Inihao and PO3 Nuñez positioned themselves while conducting surveillance at a cockfight in Zone Sunlot Calawisan, Lapu-Lapu City in line with their fiesta celebration.

This was where PO3 Inihao and PO3 Nuñez positioned themselves while conducting surveillance at a cockfight in Zone Sunlot, Calawisan, Lapu-Lapu City. (CDN PHOTO/NORMAN MENDOZA)

The lawyer of the Oyao family in Lapu-Lapu City yesterday cried foul over accusations that linked the clan to illegal drug activities on Mactan Island and the ambush of two police officers last Saturday.

“There is no such a thing as ‘Oyao Drug Group.’ It is very unfair to the family especially to the ladies and young students who have been mocked and ridiculed by these baseless accusations,” said lawyer Rameses Villagonzalo in a press statement.

A family member, Joel Oyao Amistad, was killed in an alleged shootout with the police last Sunday, just a few hours after PO3 Antonio Inihao and PO3 Jasper

Nuñez, both of the Lapu-Lapu City police, were shot by two unknown assailants while conducting an anti-drug surveillance operation in Barangay Calawisan.

Inihao died of multiple gunshot wounds while Nuñez is being treated in an undisclosed hospital.

Lapu-Lapu police investigators said there was no clear evidence that Amistad was behind the ambush of the two policemen. But Insp. Alcon Escusora, chief of the

Marigondon Police Station, said the slay of Inihao was definitely drug-related.

Villagonzalo appealed to police and the media not to drag the Oyao family into the crime, otherwise they would be compelled to file libel charges against concerned individuals or entities.

“We just want to protect the interest of the family,” he said.

Villagonzalo served as the lawyer of at least three Oyaos. One was Pacquito Oyao, a hog raiser, charged for selling illegal drugs but was acquitted by the trial court in 2014.

Based on witness accounts, the gunman wore a helmet and the latter’s face could not be recognized, Villagonzalo said.

“To the authorities, please do not take shortcuts in your investigation and quest for justice relative to the death of (Inihao),” he said.

Villagonzalo, reached by phone yesterday, said the Oyaos in Lapu-Lapu City have been receiving death threats since the ambush of the two policemen.

“They now fear for their lives,” he said.

According to some members of the family, Amistad was just inside his room when police operatives arrived to arrest him, Villagonzalo said.

During the operation last Sunday, Villagonzalo said Amistad was heard saying, ‘dad-a lang ko ninyo. Ayaw kog patya.’ (‘Just bring me to the police station but please don’t kill me.’)

“But witnesses said the police just let Amistad run and then shot him. They eventually made it appear that Amistad fought back, that was why they shot him,” the lawyer said.

Insp.  Escusora yesterday admitted that they had no evidence to link Amistad to the killing of Inihao.

He said they still could not identify the persons responsible for the attacks on the two policemen and were now working on the cartographic sketch of the gunman whom they believed was a gun-for-hire.

They were also looking for CCTV videos in areas where the motorcycles used by the perpetrators might have passed.

“Wala pa gyud hinuon mi strong link to identify Amistad as the one behind PO3 Inihao’s killing, pero gitrabaho pa na namo,” said Escusora.
(We still don’t have a strong link yet indicting Amistad as the one behind PO3 Inihao’s killing but we are working on it.)

Agus Barangay Captain Jimboy Igot, meanwhile, said he knew Amistad personally and described him as a  “good man.”

He said he  never heard of  him being involved in  illegal drug trade, much more of being a member of the “Oyao Drug Group” syndicate supposedly operating on Mactan Island.

Amistad’s wife Arlene also belied allegations her  husband resisted arrest.

She likewise that denied her husband was involved in the illegal drug trade or in the killing of Inihao.


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TAGS: Lapu-Lapu City, Mactan island

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