Ramona Bautista seeks 10-day extension to file counter-affidavit on Ramgen slay | Inquirer News

Ramona Bautista seeks 10-day extension to file counter-affidavit on Ramgen slay

/ 08:35 PM November 10, 2011

MANILA, Philippines —The lawyer of Maria Ramona “Mara” Bautista asked for a 10-day extension to submit their counter-affidavit to present her defense and narrate her version of events on what really happened that night of October 28 when her brother Ramgen Bautista (a.k.a Ram Revilla) was killed.

In Thursday’s preliminary investigation hearing at the Parañaque Prosecutors’ Office, Dennis Manzanal, counsel of Mara and younger brother Ramon Joseph “RJ” Bautista, evaded the questions of reporters and declined to comment on their case.

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Mara, 22, is the younger sister of Ramgen, and is a suspect in the murder complaint filed by the Parañaque police.

She is reported to have boarded Cathay Pacific Flight CX 902 bound for Hong Kong at around 9 p.m. on November 4 en route to Turkey.

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Assistant City Prosecutor Leah Roma explained that Manzanal asked for the extension because the Bautista camp has not received the subpoena sent via registered mail.

Roma said Manzanal has given until November 18 to file Mara’s counteraffidavit regardless of her location.

“The notice to the lawyer is notice to the client. That’s their chance to present their side. If they fail to submit their counter-affidavit, we will proceed with the resolution based on the available evidence and testimonies,” she said.

Roma said that Mara should be physically present to take her oath and give her sworn statement.

When asked if a sworn statement by Mara from the consulate of the Philippines would be admissible, Roma said she would have to study the option for the unconventional circumstances surrounding the case.

“Who knows? She might come back (Malay natin, baka bumalik),” she said.

Two witnesses, Ruel Puzon alias Katcho and Lloyd Comeda alias Lim, have implicated Mara in the planning of the murder.  Three other witnesses, Ronald Angcajas and two security guards, said they saw her calmly leave the subdivision with Ramon Joseph on the night of Ramgen’s murder, which contradicted her earlier claim that she was abducted by the killers and dumped in a Las Piñas mall.  Ramona later admitted in a television interview that she was not abducted, saying she made the story up because she was ashamed about panicking and fleeing the scene where her brother lay dying and his girlfriend, Janelle Manahan, was seriously injured.

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Two other suspects, Roy Francis Tolisora and Michael Jay Nartea, claimed during their preliminary investigation on Wednesday that Ramona had an “active participation” in the plot of killing her brother.

The police are now looking for three other suspects, a certain Bryan, Norwin Dela Cruz and Glaiza Vista, who are at large and are described as the “missing link” between Ramon Joseph, Ramona and the “masked killer.”

In an earlier interview, Sy said the police have not established who the masked killer was because Nartea and Tolisora claimed that they were involved in the first attempt to kill Ramgen but not in the October 28 hit.

Meanwhile, the Task Force Ramgen investigation head, Chief Inspector Enrique Sy, said they would give their reply to the counter-affidavit given by suspects Roy Francis Tolisora and Michael Jay Nartea to the prosecutor on Friday (November 11).

“After the reply, we will find out in the resolution if there’s probable cause. If there’s probable cause, we will elevate the case to the courts,” said Sy.

The Las Piñas police investigation unit is set to press perjury charges against Ramona Bautista for falsely claiming to the police that she was abducted on the night of Ramgen’s murder.

“Flight is an indicator of guilt. We’re studying our options on what cases to file against her in this sudden turnaround of statements,” the Las Piñas police chief, Senior Superintendent Romulo Sapitula, said.

Chief Inspector Jandale Sulit said Ramona was first seen by mall guard Marlon Bacalando near Starmall at 1:35 am on Alabang-Zapote Road in Las Piñas City.

The guard said she was only wearing socks when she approached for help. That’s when the police sought to get statement,” Sulit said.

According to Bautista’s first account, she was abducted by two men and was forcibly placed in a van after Ramgen’s murder.

As per Ramona’s first statement, she said she was soon dropped near the mall and was not hurt because the men said they would release her “if she would not do anything crazy (masama).”

Ramona had claimed that the abductors did not bother to hurt her because they saw she was seized by fear.

She claimed that she then sought police assistance and was fetched by her half-brother, Senator Ramon Bong Revilla Jr. at past 2 a.m. for medical checkup.

A television phone-in with Ramona showed that she was not abducted.

She did not, however, elaborate how she reached Las Piñas except by saying “she wanted to leave home because the killer was there” and that “she was not in the right state of mind” that night.

“She’s now telling a different story from the first statement which she signed. That’s perjury,” said Sulit.

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TAGS: Crime, criminal suspects, law and justice, Murder, preliminary investigation, Prosecution, Ram Revilla, Ramgen Bautista, Ramon RJ Bautista, Ramona Bautista
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