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Court denies bail request of 10 frat men in ‘Atio’ murder case

Horacio “Atio” Castillo III. INQUIRER file photo / LYN RILLON

MANILA, Philippines — A Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) judge on Friday denied the bail petition of 10 Aegis Juris fraternity members who are detained in Manila City Jail for the hazing death of University of Santo Tomas (UST) law student Horacio “Atio” Castillo III.

In an order dated Dec. 10, Judge Marivic Balisi-Umali, of Manila RTC Branch 20, ruled that the frat members’ petition for bail is denied due to “strong evidence of guilt of each” members in the fatal hazing of Castillo.

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“It was established that the herein victim [Castillo] was subjected to physical injuries and died by reason thereof,” read the order.

“Upon the facts and evidence presented by the prosecution, the court finds the evidence of guilt of each of the accused strong,” it added.

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Those implicated in Castillo’s death are: Arvin A. Balag, Mhin Wei Chan, Axel Munro Hipe, Oliver John Audrey Onofre, Joshua Joriel Macabali, Ralph Trangia, Robin Ramos, Jose Miguel Salamat, Danielle Hans Matthew and Marcelino Bagtang.

The prosecution also stated that accused Hipe, Trangia and Balag “delivered blows on the victim” using a paddle, read the order.

In September 2018, the frat men were transferred to Manila City Jail upon orders of Manila RTC Branch 20.

Castillo, who was a UST law freshman, died during his initiation rites conducted by members of Aegis Juris fraternity in September 2017.

His death sparked public outrage, prompting the Senate to conduct a probe while police are still investigating the case.

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Edited by JPV / TSB
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TAGS: Anti-Hazing Law, Atio Castillo, bail, hazing, judge, Manila, Manila Regional Trial Court Branch 20, Metro, Petition, University of Santo Tomas
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