Houseboy gets 120 yrs for murder of 3 boys
BACOLOD CITY, Philippines—A houseboy was sentenced to 120 years’ imprisonment for the murder of three boys who were among the eight persons he killed 13 years ago.
Bemong Barrios Gallo, 34, was meted out three counts of reclusion perpetua, or 40 years’ imprisonment, for the killing of brothers Mark Anthony, 13; Guillermo Benrico, 11, and John Michael, 9, all surnamed Rivilla.
He was ordered to pay the heirs of the minors P150,000 in civil indemnity, P150,000 in moral damages and P90,000 in exemplary damages.
Gallo is serving a separate 200-year imprisonment sentence after he was earlier found guilty of killing the boys’ grandparents, Carlos Jr., 76 and Florinda, 75; father, Guillermo Benrico , 42; and their helpers, Dolores Ogatis, 20, and Ritchell Gonzales, 19.
Gallo was also convicted of qualified theft, theft, illegal possession of firearms and frustrated murder for which he was meted out 55 years’ imprisonment, according to Supt. Amelito Fuentes, warden of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology’s male dormitory here where Gallo is detained.
Fuentes was ordered to transfer Gallo to New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City where the latter will serve his sentence without eligibility of parole.
Gallo was accused of killing the Rivilla couple who owned a sugar central, their son, three grandchildren and two house helpers inside the family compound on 24th Aguinaldo Street in Bacolod City.
Court records showed that Gallo bashed the heads of the three boys with a hammer. The other victims were either hammered or hacked.
The motive was not established but the walls of the house were smeared with messages written in blood, accusing Benrico of killing some people and playing around with women.
“One of them is my daughter,” the message said. “Sorry, it just happened.”
But none of the allegations raised by Gallo were proven true. He also didn’t have a daughter.
During the arraignment on Feb. 22, 2001, Gallo pleaded not guilty but on Feb. 6, 2014, he manifested that he would not present any evidence to support his defense.
Judge Raymond Javier of Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 52 in Bacolod City noted that Gallo owned up to the murder of the Rivilla couple and their son, which was filed in RTC Branch 50.
He added that Gallo pleaded guilty to the frustrated charge filed by the Rivilla family driver, Rudy Alfonso, before the Bacolod RTC Branch 49.
The court said the forensic evidence gathered by police from the crime scene showed that the murder was done by Gallo.
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