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De Oro media group says guilty verdict in Ampatuan case offers window for probe of other killings

/ 07:44 PM December 20, 2019

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY—Media groups here applauded the conviction of the principal accused and others in the Ampatuan massacre, saying it opened the window for an investigation and prosecution of those behind other cases of media killings.

The Cagayan de Oro Press Club (COPC), in a statement, expressed jubilation over the guilty verdict handed down by Judge Jocelyn Solis-Reyes on members of the Ampatuan clan and their co-conspirators in the multiple murder cases that took 10 years to resolve.

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“We expected nothing less than a conviction,” said Ritchie Soliman, COPC president.

He also echoed a call for the Philippine National Police (PNP) to serve warrants of arrests for others convicted of the massacre who are still at large.

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Soliman said that it was also time for the government to look into other cases of media killings and other abuses against media workers nationwide.

Pamela Jay Orias, chair of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) in Cagayan de Oro, said the conviction of many of the principal accused was the best gift Christmas gift for families of the victims.

“I hope they can now sleep soundly at night knowing that justice has finally been served,” said Orias.

Those found guilty by the court of 57 counts of murder were members of the Ampatuan clan including Andal “Unsay” Ampatuan Jr., Anwar Sajid “Datu Ulo” Ampatuan, Anwar “Datu Ipi” Ampatuan Jr., and Datu Zaldy Ampatuan.

Those convicted were also ordered by the court to pay civil indemnity, moral damages, exemplary damages and compensation for loss of earning capacity in varying amounts to the surviving families.

Edited by TSB

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TAGS: Ampatuan, journalists, Maguindanao, Massacre
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