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Thursday, April 18, 2024

More criminal charges lodged against suspects in missing ‘sabungeros’ case

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The Philippine National Police (PNP) probers have filed another case of kidnapping and serious illegal detention charges against two more suspects allegedly responsible in the abduction and disappearance of cockfight aficionado in Laguna.

Named respondents in the complaint was Julie A. Patidongan also known as “Dondon,” reportedly a staff of a farm in Barangay Palasan, Sta. Cruz, Laguna and a John Doe.

The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) filed the charges on Thursday before the National Prosecution Service of the Department of Justice based on the complaint of the kin of victim Michael Bautista of Barangay Poblacion 1, Daang Barrio Road, San Jose del Monte, Bulacan who has been missing since April 28, 2021.

“Patidongan and a John Doe were tagged as the persons seen on a video footage obtained by CIDG as the same persons who were holding the handcuffed Bautista outside the farm,” PNP officer-in-charge Lt. Gen. Rhodel Sermonia said.

In a meeting with the CIDG chief Brig. Gen. Ronald O. Lee, the handcuffed man was positively identified by his wife and brother as Michael Bautista, one of the 34 missing cockfight aficionados as they recognized him from his haircut, body built, up to his personal belongings.

Bautista is among 34 missing sabungeros who are the subject of a massive search and investigation that earlier led to the filing of kidnapping charges last March 18, 2022 against eight persons.

Based on this video evidence, police digital forensics technicians developed computerized facial composites of the two suspects, Sermonia said.

“With these developments, we are confident that the investigation on the ‘missing sabungero’ is gaining solid ground and will find closure in due time,” he said.

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