Ex-soldier charged with murder of popular Baguio cleric | Inquirer News
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Ex-soldier charged with murder of popular Baguio cleric

/ 07:22 PM January 06, 2020

BAGUIO CITY — A former soldier has been charged in absentia with killing a popular Islamic cleric in a brazen attack near the city police office on Dec. 6, 2018.

A case of murder has been filed against Joselito Fernando Vidad, an Islamic convert from Zamboanga City, on Monday (Jan. 6), according to Col. Allen Rae Co, Baguio police chief.

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The year-long investigation led to Vidad, who was positively identified by a witness as the man who shot Bedejim Abdullah outside the building of Discover Islam Baguio at the public market.

Discover Islam is a block away from the city police office and City Hall.

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Co said evidence suggested that Vidad had a grudge against Bedejim although police have yet to determine if it was personal or religious.

Images of Vidad were caught by security cameras as he fled from the crime scene. A woman was hurt by the gunman’s pistol when Vidad threw it away.

Bedejim was a vocal critic of extremism and was quick to explain Islamic traditions, practices and culture during gatherings. He participated in advocacies of the Baguio Benguet Ecumenical Group, and was a volunteer cleric of the Philippine Military Academy.

He was also an active mountain trekker, often taking part in conservation projects organized by local mountain bikers.

Edited by TSB

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TAGS: Baguio City, cleric, convert, ex-soldier, imam, Murder
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