DOJ files case vs Tau Gamma members over CSB student’s death
MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Justice on Tuesday filed before the Makati City Regional Court a case for violation of Republic Act 8049 or the Anti-Hazing Law against members of the Tau Gamma Phi fraternity for the death of neophyte Guillo Cesar Servando and injuries sustained by three others.
In a resolution dated Nov. 5 and released Tuesday, charged were Cody Errol Morales, Daniel Paul Martin Bautista, Kurt Michael Almazan, Esmerson Nathaniel Calupas, Hans Killian Tatlonghari, Eleazar Pablico III, John Kevin Navoa, Vic Angelo, Mark Andrew Ramos, Michael David Castañeda, Justice Francis Reyes, a certain alias Kiko, alias Bea and one Jane Doe.
The DOJ said “there exists probable cause” to charge the 14 in court.
They “were present during the final initiation rites of victims Servando, John Paul Raval, Lorenze Anthony Agustin and Levin Roland Flores on June 28, 2014 and who conducted the initiation rites of the four neophytes…without notice and authority from school authorities concerned,” the resolution stated.
“The positive identification of the fraternity members of Tau Gamma Phi by the three neophytes, Raval, Agustin and Flores who survived the hazing and were not even blindfolded at the time, as well as their vivid recollection of what really transpired which at least were not rebutted by the respondents who either resorted to flight or disappearance more than swayed our minds to morally conclude that they were telling the truth and that their testimonies were in fact credible, true and straightforward,” the DOJ said.
Servando, an 18-year-old student of the College of St. Benilde, was found dead at a condominium unit on Taft Avenue, Manila on June 28, 2014.
The DOJ still included Almazan in the case even if he said he was threatened by Morales to participate in the initiation rites.
“Such defense is uncorroborated and self-serving and at most…evidentiary in nature at the moment and which should be threshed out in the full blown trial of the case,” the resolution stated.
Meanwhile, the DOJ dismissed the case against Jemar Pajarito, Luis Solomon Arevalo, Carl Francis Loresca, Steven Jorge Peñano, Ma. Teresa Dayanghirang and Alyssa Federique Valbuena.
The DOJ adopted the defense of Pajarito, the caretake of the house where the initiation rites were held. He had earlier claimed that had no knowledge of what was happening at the house.
On the other hand, Arevalo, Loresca, Peñano, Dayanghirang and Valbuena, while present during the initiation rites did not inflict any injury on the neophytes.
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