DILG orders PNP to put Percy Lapid’s confessed hitman under heavy guard
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has ordered the Philippine National Police (PNP) to beef up security around Joel Escorial, the confessed gunman of tough-talking radioman-vlogger Percival “Percy Lapid” Mabasa.
Interior Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. made the move Friday following the death of Crisanto Villamor Jr., an inmate at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) in Muntinlupa City, who supposedly acted as the middleman in the assassination of Lapid based on Escorial’s extrajudicial confession.
READ: DOJ chief Remulla: ‘Middleman in prison’ in Percy Lapid slay already dead
“Inaatasan ko ang PNP na higpitan ang pagbabantay kay Joel Escorial pagkatapos ng masamang nangyari sa mga contact niya sa Bilibid. Siguruhin natin ang kanyang kaligtasan dahil siya ang susi sa pagresolba ng kasong ito,” Abalos said in a statement.
(I am ordering the PNP to tighten the security guarding Joel Escorial after what had unfortunately happened to his contact in Bilibid. We will ensure his safety because he serves as the key to resolving this case.)
On Friday night, Abalos faced the public in a news conference with the Philippine National Police and expressed dismay over Villamor’s death, a startling development that has sparked wild rumors of a conspiracy online of a coverup.
Villamor was pronounced “dead on arrival” at the NBP hospital on October 18, a few hours after Escorial was presented before the media as Lapid’s hitman.
Brig. Gen. Kirby John Kraft, chief of the Southern Police District, also clarified that another alleged middleman, Christopher Bacoto, is being protected by the police in a Bureau of Jail Management and Penology facility.
READ: Police sets record straight: There are 2 middlemen in Percy Lapid’s slay
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