Man allegedly abducted in Batangas surrendered to military—police

Man allegedly abducted in Batangas surrendered to military, police say

By: - Reporter / @FArgosinoINQ
/ 04:39 PM February 29, 2024

MANILA, Philippines — A police official said on Thursday that the 27-year-old man seen in a video allegedly being abducted in Batangas surrendered to the military in Sorsogon last February 23.

In a phone interview with, Santo Tomas police chief Lieutenant Colonel Rodel Ban-o identified the alleged kidnapping victim as Jose Marie Estiller.

Ban-o said they received a report about the purported abduction from the owner of the apartment Estiller and his sister were renting along Barangay San Pedro.


CCTV footage showed Estiller walking towards their unit when five armed men in civillian clothes suddenly took him, which also matched the apartment owner’s report.


Ban-o said they invited Estiller’s sister, Jean, to file a formal complaint at the Santo Tomas City Police Station.

“When we were about to get her statement, Jean asked for permission to eat out and promised to return, but she did not return. We contacted her at first, but she is no longer answering our next calls,” the police officer said.

“Our personnel visited their home, but no one was there. We visited again the next day, but she was not there,” he added.

Further investigation showed that the siblings had just transferred to the area two months ago, and upon cross-checking with their military counterparts in the Bicol Region, Ban-o said their team learned that Estiller reportedly surrendered to the 903rd Infantry Brigade in Bicol.

“They are claiming that the person surrendered before their members and the local government of Sorsogon around 4 p.m. on February 23, shortly after the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group Region 5 served the arrest warrants against him for various cases of murder within the region,” Ban-o said.

He added that Estiller is currently under military custody in Bicol, and their record showed that he was an alleged former New People’s Army member with over 20 arrest warrants for a series of murder cases in the Bicol Region.


He said they asked Estiller’s sister about this, but she claimed to have no knowledge about it.

READ: Chinese man abducted in Pasay found in Batangas City

When asked if they identified the men who took Estiller, Ban-o said their investigation is still ongoing.

“We are going to continue our investigation, but based on our findings, it seems this is a purely military operation. They did not coordinate this with us,” he said.

Meanwhile, the League of Filipino Students condemned the alleged abduction of Estiller, whom they described as the elder sibling of Jean, a former political prisoner and activist from the National Federation of Peasant Women (Amihan).

“Two days before the commemoration of the EDSA People Power movement, this incident is a stark reminder of why the task of resistance is just and necessary. Although the Bill of Rights is enshrined in the 1987 Constitution, human rights are still violated with impunity, giving a glimpse of what will come when Marcos Jr. succeeds with Charter Change,” the group said.

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“We demand the immediate and safe release of Jose Marie Estiller. We call on all relevant government agencies to conduct a swift investigation into this issue in order to unmask the orchestrator of this crime,” it added.

TAGS: Abduction, Military, Police

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