Ecija village councilor held for murder of colleague at a funeral
TALAVERA, Nueva Ecija –- A 31-year-old village councilor was arrested on Friday night (Jan. 4) for allegedly masterminding the murder of a colleague at the public cemetery earlier that day.
Jervie Bondoc, councilman of Barangay (village) Dimasalang Sur reportedly gave the whereabouts of fellow councilor Ramoncito Magtalapa, 55, to a contract killer.
Magtalapa was shot at the back of his head during a funeral at 10:12 a.m., said Supt. Alexie Desamito, Talavera police chief. He was declared dead on arrival at a local hospital, she said.
Desamito said Bondoc allegedly had an ax to grind against the victim, believing that Magtalapa was behind the August 2018 murder of Bondoc’s father, who was re-elected for a second term as councilman.
The younger Bondoc was appointed as his father’s replacement and is serving his unexpired term.
Desamito said witnesses saw Bondoc roaming in the cemetery, and then rush out after Magtalapa was shot.
“Initially we considered the attack as political. But as we went deeper, we realized it was an act of revenge,” Desamito said.
In an interview, Bondoc said he turned down an offer made after his father’s funeral by the alleged gunman, ‘Waway’ Jimenez, to kill Magtalapa for P50,000.
Bondoc claimed that Jimenez, his father’s close friend, vowed to carry out the killing for free.
Jimenez was with another alleged hitman, who boasted that he had executed politicians in Isabela province, he said. Bondoc said he saw Jimenez at the cemetery shortly before Magtalapa was shot.
But Desamito said evidence shows Bondoc had been an active participant in the killing and would face murder charges.
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