Cops ask Filipinos abroad for help to find Teves
CEBU CITY — The Philippine National Police in Central Visayas has called on the public, particularly the Filipinos residing or working in other countries, to report any information on the whereabouts of expelled Negros Oriental Rep. Arnolfo Teves Jr. and his three alleged cohorts who were linked to the killing of the province’s governor, Roel Degamo, and nine other people last March.
Police Lt. Col. Gerard Ace Pelare, spokesperson of the Police Regional Office in Central Visayas, said they badly needed tips from people, including those who are either visiting or living abroad, on where the former lawmaker might be hiding at this time.
“We appeal to our brothers who have information on the location of these wanted persons. Please feel free to give information to the police stations,” Pelare said in an interview on Saturday.
Hunt is on
According to Pelare, law enforcement authorities have established tracker teams in Negros Oriental to hunt down Teves, the alleged mastermind in the Degamo killing, and at least three of his alleged cohorts: Angelo Palagtiw and his sister identified only as “Gie Ann”; and a helicopter pilot identified as Capt. Lloyd Cruz Garcia II.
Investigation showed that the Palagtiw siblings served as lookouts when gunmen barged into the residential compound of Degamo in Pamplona town of Negros Oriental on the morning of March 4 and repeatedly fired at the governor and the people gathered inside, killing Degamo and nine other individuals while leaving 16 others wounded.
Garcia allegedly piloted the helicopter that transported some of the suspects from Negros Oriental’s capital Dumaguete City to Davao region.
Teves and three other suspects are now the subject of an arrest warrant issued last week by Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 51 Presiding Judge Merianthe Pacita Zuraek for the murder charges against Degamo and the nine others that were lodged before the court on Aug. 26.
The 28 charges pending against Teves before the Manila RTC were separate from the first set of three murder charges that were filed against him at Bayawan City Regional Trial Court in Negros Oriental for the 2019 killing of former Negros Oriental board member Michael Dungog, Lester Bato, and Pacito Libron.
“We have created tracker teams in a bid to arrest those with warrants of arrest,” Pelare said.
The House of Representatives expelled Teves on Aug. 16, with a total of 265 lawmakers voting to unseat Teves for disorderly behavior and violation of the code of conduct.
Before the decision came, Teves had already been slapped with two 60-day suspension orders in the House.
Teves left the country in February 2023, days before Degamo’s death. He cited medical reasons in his travel clearance, which expired in March.
Teves, in several social media appearances from an undisclosed location, denied his involvement in the crime. INQ