NBI: Bohol priest was murdered
CEBU CITY — The parish priest of the St. Peter the Apostle Parish Church in Loboc town, Bohol province did not commit suicide.
The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Wednesday revealed that Fr. Marcelino Biliran was killed based on the autopsy report conducted by its medico-legal officer Dr. Rene Cam.
“We have the results and from here we shall conduct an investigation (to find out who killed him),” NBI-Bohol Chief Rennan Augustus Oliva told the Inquirer.
He and Cam were tight-lipped about the details of the autopsy report and let Fr. Val Pinlac, the spokesperson of the Diocese of Tagbilaran, speak regarding the case’s development.
In a phone interview, Pinlac said Cam found horizontal lacerations on Biliran’s neck — an indication that the priest did not commit suicide.
In cases of suicide, the NBI told the priest that the lacerations on the victim’s neck always form a vertical pattern.
“In Fr. Mar’s case, there were no vertical lacerations. All were horizontal. And so, the NBI concluded that he was killed, and the perpetrator/s made it appear that he committed suicide,” Pinlac said.
He said Biliran’s family last week requested the NBI to conduct an autopsy on the priest’s body to find out the truth about his death.
“Fr. Mar was condemned and judged based on assumptions particularly on social media. People were made to believe that he committed suicide, and the autopsy report just proved all of them wrong,” Pinlac said.
Bishop Leonardo Medroso of the Diocese of Tagbilaran announced the result of the NBI autopsy during his 1 p.m. Mass at the St. Joseph Cathedral on Wednesday.
The bishop said Biliran would be accorded full funeral rites by the Church.
“He is a brother, a priest, a good pastor, and we will send him to his journey in the other life,” he added.
Biliran was found dead inside the toilet of his room last June 27. The initial investigation of the Loboc Police showed it was an apparent suicide by hanging with the use of an extension wire.
Some of the priest’s friends and relatives assumed Biliran suffered from depression after being diagnosed with colon cancer in September 2015.
Pinlac, who also served as rector of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Seminary in Tagbilaran, said Biliran’s family was relieved with the autopsy results.
“Saying that Fr. Mar committed suicide was an affront against priesthood. He died. Worse, he was murdered and judged by people. Yes, we’re grieving. But we’re even more hurt by the condemnation thrown at Fr. Mar,” he said.
Pinlac said the NBI and the police should now move to identify the person/s who killed the priest.
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