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Court to hear bail plea of detained Leyte town mayor over drugs, guns

Albuera Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. seeks bail, wants to quash search warrant that led to P88M shabu
By: - Correspondent / @rdejonINQ
/ 07:52 AM October 19, 2016
Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/LYN RILLON

Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/LYN RILLON

BAYBAY CITY, Leyte — The Regional Trial Court here will tackle on Wednesday, the three motions filed by Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. who is detained on illegal drugs and gun charges.

Judge Carlos Arguelles of RTC Branch 14 ruled to take up the motions during a hearing where the prosecution would oppose the motions that included asking the court to allow Espinosa to be released on bail.

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The two other motions included a motion to quash the search warrant that was used to raid his house in Barangay Benolho, Albuera on Aug. 9 when the police found 11 kilos of shabu worth P88 million.

The other motion was to seek the transfer of Espinosa from the Baybay sub-provincial Jail back to Albuera police station under Chief Insp. Jovie Espenido due to threats to his security.

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The three motions were filed by Espinosa’s lawyer, Leilani Villarino last Oct. 12 when the mayor was about to be arraigned for charges of illegal possession of firearms and drugs.

The filing of the motions caused the postponement of the arraignment.

Judge Arguelles warned Villarino not to again delay the proceedings of the case.

The prosecution, however, manifested their opposition to the move to transfer Espinosa back to his hometown.

But the judge ruled that the motions would be discussed during the hearing on Wednesday.

Even before the motions could be discussed, Espenido served two more arrest warrants against Espinosa last Oct. 12 after the postponement of his arraignment.

The two warrants pertained to the two additional charges filed against the mayor that stemmed from the raid on Aug. 10.

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One of the cases included sale of illegal drugs in violation of Section 5 of the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Acts of 2002.

Espenido has alleged that the 11 kilos of shabu found in the house of the mayor showed that the illegal drugs trade has been a family business and has not been limited to his son, Kerwin, alone.

The other case was the manufacture of explosives in violation of Republic Act 9516 after the police recovered ingredients in bomb making in his house during the Aug. 10 raid.

These included ammonium nitrate, nitric acid, blasting caps, and wires.  SFM

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TAGS: Albuera municipality, bail petition, courts, Crime, Drug trafficking, Illegal drugs, illegal possession of explosives, Illegal possession of firearms, Justice, Kerwin Espinosa, law, Leyte, litigation, local officials tagged as drug protectors, mayor, quashing of search warrant, Rolando Espinosa Sr., shabu, trials, war on drugs
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