Mamasapano acquittal ‘a travesty’—Gordon
Sen. Richard Gordon on Wednesday chided the Office of the Ombudsman after the Sandiganbayan acquitted two former senior officials of the Philippine National Police for their role in the massacre of 44 police commandos in Mamasapano, Maguindanao province, almost five years ago.
Gordon, chair of the Senate justice committee, said he might reopen the Senate inquiry into the botched police operation after the antigraft court threw out the criminal cases against former PNP chief Gen. Alan Purisima and former PNP Special Action Force (SAF) head Maj. Gen. Getulio Napeñas.
“It’s a travesty, with all due respect (to the Ombudsman) … It’s really devastating,” Gordon told reporters. “I’m severely disappointed. (The) Mamasapano (massacre) is one of the great injustices of our time.”
Citing lack of probable cause, the antigraft court’s Fourth Division on Tuesday absolved Purisima and Napeñas of graft and usurpation of authority for the alleged mishandling of the daring police raid on Jan. 25, 2015, to arrest Malaysian terrorist Zulkifli bin Hir, alias “Marwan,” and his alleged Filipino henchman, Abdul Basit Usman.
Gordon said he could not accept the fact that “nobody had been held accountable” five years after 44 SAF operatives were killed by suspected Moro rebels.
Sen. Ronald dela Rosa, a member of the PNP team that investigated the incident, supported Gordon’s move to reconvene the Senate investigation and said certain senior police officers should have been held for negligence.
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