3 in deadly exorcism rites that killed 5-year-old boy nabbed
NAGA CITY—Three relatives of a 5-year-old boy believed to have died in an exorcism ritual on Valentine’s Day in Pasacao town, Camarines Sur province, were arrested by policemen on Thursday after a witness tagged them responsible for the boy’s death.
Police said the victim, Jack Gian Banday, died of internal bleeding, after his grandfather, uncle and aunt beat him up in a chapel in Barangay Dalupaon in Pasacao.
A 12-year-old boy who witnessed the ritual told police this week that the suspects grandfather Arnold Arogo, 56; uncle Reynaldo Arogo, 27; and aunt Esperanza Arogo, 17 first butchered a white chicken and scattered its blood around the chapel.
But they later decided to take Banday, who was playing inside the chapel, and bring him to the altar. The suspects pinned him, held his legs and arms, and then punched and strangled him, said Chief Insp. Alejandro Monge II, Pasacao acting police chief.
Monge said the witness told investigators that he heard the suspects talking about how bad spirits were not appeased with the chicken offering and suspected that the spirits had possessed Banday.
Monge said the suspects, who are parabulong (quack doctors), took the boy to the altar for an exorcism ritual.
He said the suspects, who live in Legazpi City in Albay province, had been staying in the village for about a week and conducting healing sessions for villagers at the time of the deadly ritual.
Monge said they were arrested by a police team from Pasacao and the Bicol regional police in Barangay Bitano in Legazpi on Thursday afternoon. Juan Escandor Jr., Inquirer Southern Luzon
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