Bohol PNP frees 2 suspects in Mayor Boniel slay case
CEBU CITY—Two of the suspects in the slay case of Mayor Gisela Boniel of Bien Unido town in Bohol were released from police custody on Thursday afternoon, about 20 hours after they were “illegally” arrested by the police.
Lawyer Inocencio dela Cerna Jr. said the police had no grounds to arrest Lobo Boniel and Brian Sayson whose cases are still pending before the Lapu-Lapu City Prosecutor’s Office.
“They (police) should not be messing (up) with the Constitutional rights of the citizens of this country. The Bill of Rights is very clear. If you mess (up) with it, you’ll have the full force of the law against you,” Dela Cerna told the Inquirer over the phone shortly after his clients stepped out of the Bien Unido police station detention cell about 3 p.m. on Thursday.
Lobo and Sayson were arrested by Bohol policemen upon the instruction of the Regional Intelligence Division in Bien Unido town, Bohol around 6 p.m. on Wednesday after an arrest warrant was purportedly issued by the court in Cebu City, which is handling the murder case against the persons responsible for Gisela’s death.
But a perusal of the arrest warrant showed that the names of Lobo and Sayson were not included.
“There were four specific names in the warrant and then John Does but nowhere in that paper will you see the names of Lobo Boniel and Brian Sayson,” Dela Cerna said.
He said they were contemplating on filing a series of complaints against the persons who were responsible in the arrest of his clients.
“I am happy that my two clients were released. The police have realized their folly. Nevertheless, we are still exploring the possibilities of filing the appropriate charges for the blatant violation of our client’s constitutional rights,” Dela Cerna said.
Gisela’s husband, Bohol Provincial Board Member Niño Rey Boniel, was tagged as the principal suspect who allegedly shot his wife and threw her body into the sea between Cebu and Bohol on June 7. Charged along with Niño were his cousin Riolito Boniel, driver Randel Lupas, Restituto Magoncia Jr., and Wilfredo Hoylar who were all detained.
Four others were also implicated in the mayor’s killing but had not been arrested. They were Hoylar’s son Wilson, Sayson, Lobo and Allan delos Reyes Jr.
Since they were not arrested by the police early on, Wilson, Sayson and Lobo, and Delos Reyes would undergo the regular preliminary investigation where they would be asked to submit their respective counter-affidavits.
They could only be arrested once the court issued a warrant after the Prosecutor’s Office would elevate the case to the court. JPV