5 ‘persons of interest’ identified in photojournalist attack — PNP
MANILA, Philippines — Five “persons of interest” in the shooting of photojournalist Rene Joshua Abiad last June 29 have been identified by authorities, according to Philippine National Police (PNP).
PNP spokesperson Colonel Jean Fajardo said the suspects are under surveillance.
She added they would likely be arrested by the end of the week, based on the update she received from Quezon City Police District (QCPD) director Brigadier General Nicholas Torre III.
“Meron na po silang limang persons of interest and kasalukuyan po nila itong fina-follow up,” Fajardo told reporters.
(They already have five persons of interest and are currently following it up.)
“We don’t want to preempt but they already have the lead and, hopefully, sabi niya hindi matatapos ang linggong ito, they are confident na makukuha na nila ang mga suspects,” she added.
(He said this week would not end, they are confident, they would be able to get the suspects.)
Fajardo further revealed police might be dealing with a professional criminal group.
This suspicion was formed after QCPD discovered the suspect’s vehicle was bearing a license plate number assigned to a different vehicle.
“Yung plaka po na nakakabit dun sa Vios na gamit ng suspects ay hindi po ito dapat nakakabit sa Vios kung di sa isang Honda,” Fajardo disclosed the information from Torre.
(The license plate attached to the Vios used by the suspects should not be attached to a Vios but to a Honda.)
“Na-trace na rin po nila itong owner nitong Honda. Nakakabit po sa kanyang sasakyan yung original plate po nila,” she added.
(We traced the owner of this Honda. The original plate is attached to their vehicle.)
“There is an indication na mukhang kinambal po itong plaka na ito,” Fajardo said, citing information from Torre.
(There is an indication that this license plate had been illegally reproduced.)
“Ito pong nagtangkang mag-ambush po sa mga kapatid sa media, this involves a professional group. So, nag-iingat po tayo sa pagbibigay ng information,” Fajardo further said.
(The persons who tried to ambush fellow media members involved a professional group. So, were are careful in giving information.)
Last June 29, Abiad and his family were onboard their vehicle traversing the corner of Corumi and Gasan streets in Barangay Masambong when two unidentified gunmen, riding another car, blocked their way and opened fire.
Police said four of the seven passengers were injured, including Abiad.
Abiad’s wife and their 6-year-old daughter were not harmed.