Cops helpless without warrant vs slay suspects



More than two weeks after the gruesome crime was discovered, two men allegedly behind the killing of a car parts plant manager in a Pasig City motel  remain at large.

“We know where they are but we can’t move without a warrant,” Senior Supt. Mario Rariza, chief of police, told the Inquirer.

Police filed the murder charges in the Pasig City Prosecutor’s Office against Elton Juan, 21, and one alias “Panget” as early as Nov. 20,  one day after the body of Roberto Apuyan, of  Friction Material Inc., a car spare parts manufacturing plant, was discovered.

The body bore 11 stab wounds inside a room at Pitang Suites on Evangelista Street.

A 15-year-old girl, now in police custody, who allegedly helped in  killing the victim is facing similar charges.

Rariza said warrants  are usually issued soon after the charges have been filed to enable police to immediately go after  crime suspects.

“I don’t know why the warrant has not yet been issued,” Rariza said.

Senior Insp. Rodrigo de Dios, head of the city’s investigation unit, however, told the Inquirer that this was because the city prosecutor handling the case, Rodney Magbanua, had gone on leave.

He said Magbanua was supposed to file the case so a warrant could finally be issued.

At the same time, the police official said  that it took some time before the victim’s autopsy report could be sent to the fiscal’s office. The  report is  a requirement for the application of a warrant of arrest.

Get Inquirer updates while on the go, add us on these apps:

Inquirer Viber

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • charlie_oscar

    Elton Juan?

    Was he playing the song “Someone Saved My Life Tonight” ? after the hit?

  • Bansot

    Where are the reforns that Justice de Lima had previously promised . I thought she said they will expedite the prosecution process and court trials, yet they can’t even issue a warrant of arrest on time in order that the police can apprehend the supsect of a murder case. Surely they can’t wait for the Public Prosecutors to come back from leave before this case is attended to becuase he is ought to have an assistant during his absence. As well, the autopsy report related to criminal activities particularly murder has the priority over anythng else depending upon the request of the apprehending authorities!!!

  • nti_boohaya

    Ano ba yan?  Kriminal na pagala gala hindi mahuli dahil walang warrant.  Pero “bibisitahin at kakatokin” ka ng mga parak sa bahay mo kapag di ka nag renew ng gun license.  Galing a

  • Mang_Ben

    Does it mean that there is no continuity in the prosecution process just because the prosecutor is On Leave?

    Is it a one-man-job?  No assistant?  No alternate?

    Does Justice have to wait till the prosecutor comes back to work?

    In the meantime, the suspects may go scot-free, far, far away.

  • Jim

    Mga ganitong balita ang nakakapagwalang gana at paniniwala sa abilidad ng pulisya at hudikatura na kasuhan at ibilanggo ang mga kriminal… tsk tsk tsk…

  • Darwin

    Need to overhaul warrantless arrest provisions to include personal knowledge through investigation.

  • Ernesto

    walang kwenta ang mga procecutor natin dito sa bansa ,may gruesome killing walng procecutor delayed ang pag arrest,napaka walang hiya talaga,sinasahoran kayo ng taong bayan.ano klase ang pang gobyerno natin

  • Garo Ungaro

    the police has the authority to arrest under “provable cause” then, if found not guilty then they can be release…but warrant to arrest issued by the prosecutor is legal…when warrant does not exist…provable cause warrant an arrest….in this case maybe, all the evidence are tampered with and maybe not admissible in court…

  • $37644997

    Arrest now,warrant later is better.The alledge killer are long gone by now.

  • Magsasaka

    ang galing talaga ng justice system natin, pinayagan mag leave yong incharge ng walang kapalit

    • Jack

      ganyan talaga sa gobyerno. baka may sasabit na iba sa kasong yan kaya pinapatagal ang filing ng kaso para makatakas ang mga salarin

      • Magsasaka

        tama bro, parang pelikula lang ng CIA pa puro maniobra ang ginagawa hehehe

  • Horst Manure

    Maybe text the perp and ask him to turn himself in if that’s ok with him, sounds like a quicker way to get Just US

  • $8278216

    Ha,ha,ha….bullshittttttt na sestema…..siguradong next year na ang balik ni prosecutor,,,mag pasko at bagong taon muna kayong mga suspects…kawawa ang mabibiktima pa ninyo bago kayo ma issuehan ng arrest warrant..

  • Josemakabayan

    He he, flimsy alibi!!! Di na ba gaga law ang hustisya if the one in charge is absent ???? You just gave the criminals a way to elude arrest !!!! Bobo !!!!!

  • RM

    Hi guys,

    Just a clarification on this “news” bit. Sana po hindi idelete ito and I request na i-print ito sa broadsheet para naman ma isalba ko ang aking pangalan.

    First of all, a case was already filed before the court against the minor accused, if the writer made her research she’ll know, immediately after the inquest proceeding.  Being a minor she is now in the custody of the LSWD concerned. IBIG SABIHIN PO NITO MAY KASO NA SA KORTE! sa Family Court ho ito ng Pasig, dahil siya po ay menor de edad.

    Second, as the two other suspects were not caught after the fact (at large), a preliminary investigation was set to notify them of the charges and give them a chance to answer. Also to give the complainant and police investigators sufficient time to
    present additional evidence. Due process dictates this.there is no
    other way around it or else the case will be dismissed by the court.

    What is a preliminary investigation? In layman’s terms, this is where
    the fiscal/prosecutor determines if the evidence is sufficient to file a
    case in court and prove the guilt of the respondent/ accused.In this case the preliminary investigation was set last November 28, 2012 at December 6, 2012. Bakit hindi kaagad nag set ng hearing pagkatapos ng inquest? Ito po ay dahil kailangan natin bigyan ng pagkakataon ang ating post office na ma ideliver ang notice/subpoena sa mga respondent/akusado at iba pang partido. Noong hearing ng November 28, 2012 nalaman po ang tunay na pangalan ni @panget:(doon pa lang siya mano-notify)   at noong December 6, lang isunumite ang medico legal certificate (very important) ng complainant at pulis.

    Now after they are notified, and if the respondents don’t appear, the case will be submitted for resolution. Which was the case here. Natapos na rin po ang resolution noong lunes. Di po dahil sa report na ito to be clear about it.

    When will a warrant of arrest be issued? KORTE po ang mag i-issue nito after the filing of the amended complaint. Hindi po prosecutor’s office.

    Wag kayong mag alala di po namin pinapababayaan makatakas ang mga kriminal. Meron lang tayong prosesong sinusunod para sila ay ma-convict.Wala nga lang talagang ho short cut dito

    Now if the you will allow me to address ang ating butihing manunulat, ako po ay ordinaryong civil servant lamang, di po ako nagleave sa duration ng kasong ito na sinasabi ni De Dios, na humingi na ng tawad sa akin kanina dahil di niya daw ito sinabi sa iyo. Ewan ko kung sino sa inyo ang nagsasabi ng totoo..Pero it looks like the damage is done to my reputation judging by the comments here.

    What saddens me most is by making this baseless report you contribute to the loss of confidence in our judicial system, which already has a tarnished image among our countrymen. Hindi po tabloid ang Inquirer. Please check your facts next time. Hopefully, you’re young enough to learn from this.
    Yours sincerely

    Fiscal Rodney Magbanua

    • Garo Ungaro

      since there’s a case filed already then, there no need for a an arrest warrants as the defendant has been notified and maybe in jail. if the defendant not in jail still at large then bench warrant is still active..until its serve no time limitation…what was the charge on the warrant…homicide…?…since there was already a proceeding…so the case is on..if not u cant dismiss  a case if there a complaint …and the gravity of the case is homicide..if there was already judge assigned then it is his prerogative of this case..all warrants are active with no limitation until the persons in the said warrants are presented in court..if there no complainant then the court decides..since there is already coroners inquest and there was prima faci evidence…then there’s a case, basing on the preliminary findings it was determine that there was a probable cause to issue a warrant to the suspects..since they are at large then the warrant issue are active until they(suspects) are presented to the court…so,right now everything is own hold…until the suspects are serve and presented to the court…for disposition…basing on the preliminary investigation why the prosecuting office did not recommend to the judge that there is a strong “probable cause” to issue a bench warrant?..since thats the only way the police can proceed legally with a bench warrant…to pursue the case…?

      • RM

         Di po ganun kuya… Although the case was filed against the minor respondent, her co-accused who were not caught in the act or right after the killing cannot be arrested without subjecting them to a preliminary investigation first.As I said wala po tayong short cut. Kailangan ng due process kasi ma didismiss lang ang kaso pag wala.

      • Garo Ungaro

        i am confused…with the due process here…preliminary investigations…done by the prosecutors office…so prosecutors determines that is no probable cause to recommend for a bench warrants whether the accused was in custody or at large…how can we determine the case if ur not in the position of the accused and ur determination is base on ur preliminary investigations and was determine that..there no probable cause…its still open…the allegation on the suspect as charge can not be pursue as the findings of the prosecutors appears that there’s no probable cause to merit a bench warrant to bring this suspect to court..its the duty of the prosecuting office to recommend to the court if there’s a merit for a bench warrant or not…preliminary investigations or not…there’s a probable cause to issue a warrant…thats the due process…no bench warrant no arrest…that is the law…prosecutors must determine that….and recommend it to the court so the ball is rolling…? the court will be the one who will determine if there’s a case or not…basing of the probable cause..not the prosecutors office …it only recommends…if there’s a probable cause for a request for a warrant…basing on complaints oral, thru witness or written affidavit by the complaint is enough to request for a warrant…

      • RM

         Simpliest explanation  would be the prosecutor’s office determine if the evidence is sufficient enough to file a case against respondent. The court then will then determine (independent of the prosecutors findings) probable cause to issue a warrant.of arrest. Meaning prosecutors can only appreciate the evidence submitted to them but has no power whatsoever to determine whether a person can be arrested based on such evidence. That’s the court’s duty.

      • Garo Ungaro

        the courts has to determine. if the there is a case based on the probable cause..established here. but its does not exactly mean the suspects are guilty..thats why arrest warrants are issued by the judge to determine the validity of the allegations. this is a homicide case and the suspects are known…why?..arrest was not made? and.two things…arrest can be made with or without warrants…as determine by probable cause…as per witness and complaint either by the law established here…and it would be better if there’s a warrant issued, so as to facilitate in custody of the suspects..the judge determine whether the probable cause merits a continuation…if the judge determine theres no case base on the allegations then their release free…but if they found out otherwise then…case is on…in this case the alleged suspects are free…even the gravity of the allege crime…homicide…that is puzzling …was the case presented to the judge for determination for a warrant to be issue? thats the prosecutors job…or did the prosecutors make a determination that the evidence on this case does not merit further investigations and no recommendation for a request for a warrant…? the charge is murder victime stab 11 times…there was a 15 years accomplice/witness to the alleged crime..thats is the ground for recommendation and issue of an arrest warrant…not summon by mail…for the allege suspect to appear and be investigated..the 15 years old alleged/witness accomplice to the alleged suspects are sufficient enough to merit a warrant and an arrest…?

      • RM

        Sorry I don’t get what you mean here. It’s what the Rules of Court requires and what the prosecutor and judge must do. All must follow it unless there is another revision of the rules by the SC.

      • August Daskeo

         ang tagisan ng marunong at nagdudunong dunongan….

To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.

Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:

c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


editors' picks



latest videos