Degamo widow calls Teves’ alleged release a ‘media stunt’

Degamo widow calls Teves’ alleged release a ‘media stunt’

/ 05:52 AM June 12, 2024

Degamo widow calls Teves’ alleged release a ‘media stunt’

Pamplona, Negros Oriental mayor Janice Degamo —Grig C. Montegrande

DUMAGUETE CITY, NEGROS ORIENTAL, Philippines — A media stunt meant to deceive people was how Mayor Janice Degamo of Pamplona town, Negros Oriental, described the recent move of the camp of expelled Rep. Arnolfo Teves Jr. to free and exonerate him from accusations of masterminding the massacre of her husband, former Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo, and nine other individuals in March last year.

“Negrenses have become accustomed to the deceit and trickery used by Arnie Teves and members of his terrorist group,” Degamo said in a text message to the Inquirer on Tuesday.


“Yesterday’s (Monday) media stunt by Arnie’s legal team was nothing more than a photo-op designed to mislead the public and spread fear within Negros Oriental that Arnie Teves had once again used his blood money to escape justice,” she added.


READ: Teves rearrested, says DOJ

Remulla’s statement

On Monday, the former lawmaker’s lawyer, Ferdinand Topacio, claimed that his client was released from detention because “our government screwed up” and the Philippines had filed its extradition request at the wrong time.

Degamo, however, said the Department of Justice (DOJ) had told her that Teves was taken into custody by Timor Leste’s national police and he appeared before the court on Tuesday morning for extradition proceedings.

In a statement on Tuesday, the DOJ said Teves’ release from prison and subsequent rearrest were “part of the country’s [legal] process.” But it did not explain why he was released in the first place.

Justice Secretary Jesus Remulla also thanked the Timor Leste government for its “unwavering cooperation” in bringing the former lawmaker to justice.

“This rearrest underscores the robust partnership between our nations and our collective commitment to eradicating impunity, regardless of one’s social status or influence,” Remulla said in a statement.


“We look forward to Mr. Teves facing the charges against him in a court of law [in the Philippines] and not anywhere else,” he added.

The DOJ also showed a photo of Teves being handcuffed by three men, two of whom were in police attire, saying the photo was taken during the rearrest.

Teves was arrested by authorities while playing golf in Timor-Leste on March 21 this year based on a red alert notice by the International Criminal Police Organization.

He was expelled by the House of Representatives in August last year after the DOJ filed criminal charges against him and four others before the Manila Regional Trial Court.

Degamo, in an earlier statement, believed that there were other victims of violence aside from her husband.

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“The governor was just one of the many victims. I hope a lot of people will come out in the open and tell their stories too,” she said. —with a report from Dona  Z. Pazzibugan

TAGS: Arnolfo Teves Jr., Atty. Ferdinand Topacio, Gov. Roel Degamo

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