Percy Lapid slay case: Gunman says ‘someone from Bilibid’ gave kill order
MANILA, Philippines — “Someone from Bilibid” gave the order to kill veteran broadcaster Percy Lapid.
Confessed gunman Joel Escorial revealed this on Tuesday as the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and Philippine National Police (PNP) presented him to the media following his supposed surrender to authorities on October 17.
“Galing po sa loob, sa Bilibid po (Someone from inside the Bilibid),” said the 39-year-old suspect in the killing of Lapid, whose real name was Percival Mabasa, when asked who instructed him and his accomplices to ambush the radioman.
Bilibid is the common term for the New Bilibid Prison – the country’s main penitentiary managed by the Bureau of Corrections under the Department of Justice – located in Muntinlupa City.
Escorial, in the same press briefing where he was presented, also identified his alleged partners in crime as brothers Edmon and Israel Dimaculangan, and a certain “Orlando” or “Orly” – all of whom are still at large as of this posting.
READ: Confessed gunman in Percy Lapid killing surrenders, tags 3 other suspects
He then detailed how they allegedly plotted to gun down Lapid last October 3.
“Iyong usapan, kung sino po ang matapat kay Percy po, siya po ang babaril. Nagkataon po natapat sa akin. Sabi naman po, kung hindi ko binaril, ako po ang papatayin kaya nga, binaril ko na po si Percy,” Escorial narrated, recounting what Orly allegedly told him before they committed the crime.
(Our arrangement was for whoever got closest to Percy would be the one to fire the fatal shot, and I was in that position. I was threatened with death if I didn’t shoot Percy at that moment, so I did.)
Escorial maintained they were following the orders from Orlando, who in turn received instructions from whoever was in the Bilibid.
“Iyong kumontrata po, sir, galing sa loob ng Bilibid. Tinawag po sa amin na ganoon daw po (The one who booked us came from inside Bilibid. Someone called us to do it),” he added.
According to Escorial, a total of P550,000 was distributed among the people involved in Lapid’s killing. He also said that around P140,000 has since been deposited into his bank account.
Interior Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr., for his part, urged the mastermind and the other three suspects to surrender to the police.
“We have to get the mastermind. That’s very important,” he said, noting that the PNP is still conducting follow-up investigations.
The administrations of both President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and former President Rodrigo Duterte were targets of Lapid’s scathing criticism. He was ambushed and killed outside the gate of the Las Piñas City neighborhood where he lived.
He was the voice of DWBL 1242’s biting political commentary program “Lapid Fire.”
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