Gunman of Dominguez carnap group gets life term for slaying of LRA employee
THE alleged gunman of the notorious Dominguez carnapping group was convicted on Tuesday for the 2011 car theft and killing of a government employee in Kamuning, Quezon City.
Rolando Talban, aka Eduardo Fernandez, was sentenced to reclusion perpetua (up to 40 years in jail) by the Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 87 after he was found guilty of qualified carnapping under Republic Act No. 6539.
Judge Aurora Hernandez-Calledo also ordered Talban to pay a sum of P300,000 in damages to the family of the victim, Teresita Teaño, an administrative assistant at the Land Registration Authority.
Carnapping becomes qualified or aggravated when, in the course of commission or on the occasion of the carnapping, the owner, driver or occupant is killed or raped, states the court ruling.
“I’m satisfied because the penalty was reclusion perpetua. At least my daughter was given justice after four years,” the victim’s father, lawyer Odon Teaño, said after the promulgation.
“When I see him (Talban), my chest goes…” Odon Teaño said as he pounded his chest. “What kind of person will do that? He’s a devil.”
Teresita Teaño was killed in front of the Brahma Kumaris Meditation Center on Kamuning Road at the corner of T. Gener Street in Quezon City on June 15, 2011, around 6 a.m.
Three men approached her as she was getting out of her red sedan, a newly purchased Hyundai Accent.
According to an eyewitness, Talban grabbed Teaño’s bag. At first, the witness thought it was a marital quarrel as the man hugged the woman during the struggle. When the woman was able to break free and attempted to run, the man shot her.
“Eyewitness Rosemarie Quintos made a direct, positive, categorical and straightforward testimony during the trial that she actually saw the accused as the very same person who shot Marie Teresita Teaño on June 15, 2011, around 6 a.m.,” the court decision said.
The witness said that after shooting Teaño, Talban went to the victim, held her neck and shot her again.
A medico legal expert testified that Teaño died from a gunshot wound in the chest as the bullet pierced her vital organs such as the lungs.
Previous police reports said Teaño sustained gunshot wounds on the right cheek and right arm. She was supposedly run over as her attackers fled with her car.
The witness said Talban took the driver’s seat while his two cohorts got in on the passenger seats. She was able to identify Talban from a police gallery.
In his defense, Talban said he was working at his uncle’s sugarcane plantation in Batangas from June 2008 to June 2011 and never went to Metro Manila during that period.
He presented two barangay certifications, which the court said did not bolster his alibi. The first certification only said he was born in Barangay San Diego, Lian, Batangas, while the second document said he was a law-abiding resident of Barangay Dalig, Balayan, Batangas, the court noted.
Talban affirmed that he was arrested in 2011 in Dasmariñas, Cavite, because he was staying there with a live-in partner.
“Denial and alibi, if not substantiated by clear and convincing evidence are negative and self-serving evidence and bear no weight in law,” the court said.
“Not even the owner of the alleged sugarcane plantation whom accused claims to be his uncle testified on his behalf,” the court said.
Talban, together with brothers Roger and Raymond Dominguez, is also accused in the car theft and killing of car dealer Venson Evangelista, which is pending in the Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 215.
“I’m happy, this is justice for all, although my son’s case is still pending. This will serve as warning to future carnappers that the criminal justice system is still working,” Venson’s father Arsenio Evangelista said.
“At least Talban was held accountable, he has a lot of cases. He was also accused of killing Rejoice Rivera of the Baywalk Bodies,” Evangelista said. SFM