Death of middleman in Percy Lapid case a possible murder — Remulla
MANILA, Philippines–The death of the middleman from the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) in the Percy Lapid killing is a possible murder case, too, Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla said Thursday.
“We’re not talking about one murder case here. It’s possible the Jun Villamor case may be a possible murder case, too, kaya we [that is why] are also investigating that. It’s our obligation to do that,” Remulla told reporters.
He said: “it’s too much of a coincidence that a person has a dying declaration, and then he dies, saying that he will be killed. You conclude that. It’s a no coincidence.”
The middleman, Cristito Villamor Palaña, previously named Jun Globa Villamor and Crisanto Palaña Villamor, promised to pay confessed gunman Joel Escorial and her cohorts P550,000 in exchange for killing Lapid.
Lapid died on October 18, the same day a press conference was held at Camp Crame. During the press conference, gunman Joel Escorial was presented to the media.
Villamor was found dead inside the national penitentiary hours after confessed gunman Joel Escorial was presented to the media on October 18.
His sister, Marisa, is now under the Witness Protection Program, together with another sibling. Marisa has received a text message from her brother mentioning individuals who might be involved in the case he dies. Two hours after sending the message, he was taken to the NBP hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Remulla said the inmates Villamor identified in his message are already under the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) custody.
Initial autopsy findings made by the National Bureau of Investigation and released last Saturday showed, among others, “no apparent sign of external physical injury” on Villamor’s body.
The Bureau of Corrections also said its health service unit did not find evidence of foul play on Villamor’s death.
A second autopsy requested by Lapid’s family was conducted by top forensic pathologist Dr. Raquel Fortun.
“She will come up with a written report by Friday,” Remulla said.
Earlier, Philippine National Police chief Gen. Rodolfo Azurin Jr. also said he suspected foul play might have been involved in the death of Villamor, calling the timing of his death “questionable.”
DOJ says four persons of interest from Bilibid now with NBI
‘Middleman’ revealed to sister those behind Percy Lapid murder – report
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