Tag Archives: Andal Ampatuan Sr

[In the news] 78 massacre suspects face charges over 58th victim -INQUIRER.net

78 massacre suspects face charges over 58th victim.
By Julie M. Aurelio, Philippine Daily Inquirer
May 26, 2013

inquirer

A Quezon City court hearing the 2009 Maguindanao massacre case has ordered the arraignment of 78 suspects for the 58th murder case filed recently on behalf of a slain photojournalist whose remains were never recovered.

Judge Jocelyn Solis-Reyes of QC Regional Trial Court Branch 221 ruled that there was probable cause to continue with the case for the murder of photojournalist Reynaldo “Bebot” Momay.

The court set the arraignment of Andal Ampatuan Sr., former Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Gov. Zaldy Ampatuan, and 76 others on Wednesday at the Quezon City Jail Annex in Camp Bagong Diwa, Taguig City.

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[In the news] Super body formed to probe extrajudicial killings -INQUIRER.net

Super body formed to probe extrajudicial killings
By Christine O. Avendaño, Philippine Daily Inquirer
November 27, 2012

President Benigno Aquino has created a super body that will investigate old and new cases of extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances, torture and other grave human rights violations, with “greater priority” to be given to those committed under the administration of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

Justice Secretary Leila de Lima on Monday released to reporters Administrative Order No. 35 creating this body, which she said the President signed on Nov. 22, the eve of the third anniversary of the infamous massacre of 58 people allegedly by members of the Ampatuan clan and their followers in Maguindanao in 2009.

Under the AO, the President created a nine-member “Inter-agency committee on Extra-Legal Killings, Enforced Disappearances, Torture and Other Grave Violations of the Right to Life, Liberty and Security of Persons.”

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Human Rights Online Philippines does not hold copyright over these materials. Author/s and original source/s of information are retained including the URL contained within the tagline and byline of the articles, news information, photos etc.

[In the news] Daughter of 58th Ampatuan massacre victim files murder complaint – InterAksyon.com

Daughter of 58th Ampatuan massacre victim files murder complaint
by Lorenz Niel Santos, InterAksyon.com
January 12, 2012

 MANILA, Philippines — The daughter of a photojournalist killed in the November 23, 2009 but whose body has yet to be found filed on Thursday a murder complaint, the 58th related to the mass murder.

Only 57 counts of murder filed against more than 190 suspects led by key members of the powerful Ampatuan clan of Maguindanao are currently being heard by the Quezon City Regional Trial Court.

Ma. Reynafe Momay-Castillo hopes the court will include the case of her father, Reynaldo Geneblaza Momay of the Midland Review, one of the 32 media workers who perished in the massacre.

Only Momay’s dentures were recovered from the site of the carnage in Sitio Masalay, Barangay Salman, Ampatuan town.

Castillo’s lawyer Gilbert Andres said the Philippine National Police filed a letter complaint with the Department of Justice last year.

“Gusto lang naming ipaalala sa kanila ang kaso na ito. Ayaw namin na matabunan ito (We just want to remind them of this case. We do not want it to be buried),” Andres said in an interview.

Read full article @ interaksyon.com

[in the news] CA junks rebellion case against Ampatuans – GMAnetwork.com

CA junks rebellion case against Ampatuans
Andreo Calonzo/VS, GMA News
January 2, 2012

 The Court of Appeals on Monday dismissed the rebellion case against members of the Ampatuan clan and their allies for lack of probable cause, a GMA News TV report said.

The appellate court upheld a previous ruling by the Quezon City Regional Court Branch 77 junking the case for the government’s supposed failure to present evidence to support the rebellion case. [/news/story/187254/news/nation/court-junks-rebellion-raps-vs-ampatuan-patriarch-others]

Among the Ampatuans named as respondents to the case are: clan patriarch Andal Ampatuan Sr., former Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Gov. Zaldy Ampatuan, Datu Akmad Tato Ampatuan, Datu Anwar Ampatuan and Datu Sajid Islam Ampatuan.

Members of the powerful Ampatuan clan in Central Mindanao have been blamed for the massacre of 57 people, including 32 journalists, in Maguindanao province on Nov. 23, 2009.

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[In the news] Yearender: DOJ steps up prosecution of Arroyo, other erring ex-officials – www.philstar.com

Yearender: DOJ steps up prosecution of Arroyo, other erring ex-officials
By Edu Punay, The Philippine Star
January 01, 2012

 MANILA, Philippines – President Aquino’s most popular Cabinet member, Secretary Leila de Lima of the Department of Justice (DOJ) again took the spotlight in 2011 and spearheaded the administration’s campaign promise to prosecute former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo.

The DOJ last November filed a case of electoral sabotage against Arroyo, former provincial elections supervisor Lintang Bedol and former Maguindanao governor Datu Andal Ampatuan Sr. for allegedly rigging the results of senatorial elections in Maguindanao in the 2007 polls.

Arroyo had tried to leave the country to seek treatment for a rare disease in her cervical spine pending preliminary investigation on the poll fraud charges, but De Lima blocked her bid by issuing a watchlist order and denying a request for allow departure order.

The indictment brought Arroyo, who appointed De Lima to the government in 2008 as chair of Commission on Human Rights, to hospital arrest while attending trial before a Pasay City regional trial court.

The DOJ was criticized for alleged haste in filing of the case in court.

The joint panel of DOJ and Commission on Elections (Comelec) had ended the preliminary investigation only on second hearing and without the formal answers from Arroyo, who failed to submit her counter-affidavit after she was given 10 days to do so.

Upon approval of Comelec, Arroyo was charged primarily based on testimony of former provincial administrator Norie Unas, who claimed overhearing the former president instruct Ampatuan to ensure 12-0 victory of Team Unity in his province. Unas reportedly heard the instructions to Ampatuan during a gathering in Malacañang, days before the 2007 polls.

Apart from Arroyo, also indicted were former Comelec chairman Benjamin Abalos Sr., his chief-of-staff Jaime Paz, and Capt. Peter Reyes, of the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (ISAFP) for a separate case of electoral sabotage in North and South Cotabato provinces also during the 2007 polls.

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[In the news] Philippine massacre victims to file case vs Arroyo – ph.news.yahoo.com

Philippine massacre victims to file case vs Arroyo
By HRVOJE HRANJSKI | AP

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — Relatives of 57 people massacred in 2009 in the southern Philippines are suing former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo over the killings, which they claim she could have prevented, a lawyer said Tuesday.

At least two Arroyo allies, including a former governor of an autonomous Muslim region, are among about 100 suspects being tried on murder charges in the country’s worst politically motivated bloodbath, which occurred two years ago Wednesday. The dead included 32 media workers, making it the worst single killing of journalists in the world.

Arroyo was arrested last week on charges that she ordered the former governor, Andal Ampatuan Sr., and another official to commit election fraud two years before the massacre. Arroyo has condemned and denied any knowledge of the killings, but lawyer Harry Roque said she should have known that Ampatuan and his son were a danger.

Roque said would file the lawsuit Tuesday, seeking 15 million pesos ($346,000) in damages.

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[In the news] Miriam: Int’l court has no jurisdiction over Arroyo, Ampatuan cases – GMAnews.tv

Miriam: Int’l court has no jurisdiction over Arroyo, Ampatuan cases

Even if the Philippines has recently become one of its members, the International Criminal Court is not likely to accept any complaint brought before it against former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Sen. Miriam Santiago said Sunday.

And because the ICC is not retroactive, it may not have jurisdiction over the Ampatuan clan, some members of which are implicated in the massacre of 57 people in Maguindanao province two years ago, Santiago also said.

Santiago said the ICC does not have jurisdiction over cases involving graft and corruption, which are at the heart of cases lodged in the Philippines against Arroyo, now a member of Congress representing Pampanga‘s second legislative district.

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[In the news] Police blotter tells story of blocked witness – Inquirer.net

MAGUINDANAO MASSACRE TRIAL
Police blotter tells story of blocked witness
By Philip C. Tubeza
Philippine Daily Inquirer

Even as the accused Ampatuan family members have gone to the Supreme Court to block the testimony of key government witness Kenny Dalandag, prosecutors on Wednesday succeeded in putting into the court record Dalagdag’s initial report to the police about the Maguindanao massacre.

Judge Jocelyn Solis-Reyes allowed policeman Cixon Kasan, former officer in charge of the Buluan, Maguindanao, police station, to read the entry he wrote in the police blotter when Dalandag went to the station at around 2 a.m. of Nov. 24, 2009, only hours after the massacre which left at least 57 people dead.

“(Kasan) was not supposed to testify now but we moved his testimony forward because the Ampatuans are stopping [Dalandag] from testifying,” said a prosecution team member who asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to speak on the matter.

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[From the web] Alliance against impunity formed – Bulatlat.com

Alliance against impunity formed

By RONALYN V. OLEA
Bulatlat.com

MANILA –Wearing a black dress, Monette Salaysay took the stage and began speaking. Her voice broke and her tears fell the moment she uttered the name of her husband, Napoleon, one of the 32 journalists killed in the Maguindanao massacre on November 23, 2009.

“After two years, I thought I would no longer cry. But it still pains me,” Salaysay said in Filipino. “What makes it even more painful is the fact that the killing was brutal and that the former president knew how evil the perpetrators are.”

“I knew little about the law but I can say that we are just being given the runaround,” Salaysay, who religiously attend hearings, said. Since the massacre, only two members of the Ampatuan clan who are suspected of masterminding the carnage have been arraigned.

In the room are many other relatives of victims of extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances. Like Salaysay, they have lost their husbands, mothers, fathers, sons and daughters, co-workers and friends to state violence. Now, as they continue to mourn and to search, they have started raising their fists against a monster called impunity.

Read full article @ bulatlat.com

[In the news] Kin of massacre victims oppose accused transfer – inquirer.net

Kin of massacre victims oppose accused transfer
By Julie M. Aurelio
Philippine Daily Inquirer

Relatives of 26 Maguindanao massacre victims have opposed a bid to transfer three accused who were not admitted as state witnesses to join the other accused in Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City.

In a motion, the families, including Maguindanao governor Esmael Mangundadatu protested the sought-after transfer of Mohammad Sangki, Police Officer 1 Rainier Ebus and Inspector Rex Ariel Diongon.

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[In the news] Court of Appeals issues freeze order vs Ampatuan assets – Nation – GMA News Online – Latest Philippine News

Court of Appeals issues freeze order vs Ampatuan assets – Nation – GMA News Online – Latest Philippine News.

SOPHIA DEDACE, GMA News

The Court of Appeals on Tuesday ordered government agencies and banking institutions to freeze the accounts and properties of the Ampatuan clan, whose members are charged with masterminding the Nov. 23, 2009 massacre in Maguindanao.

In a 23-page decision, the appellate court’s Special Second Division said the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) was able to establish that the Ampatuans may have used the accounts and properties in committing fraud, such as amassing up to P1 billion in ill-gotten wealth.

“We agree with petitioner that probable cause exists that the subject bank accounts and other described properties of the respondents in the petition are related to unlawful activities; and that unless frozen, the funds in the subject accounts will certainly be withdrawn and the other identified properties disposed of, thereby placing them beyond the reach of the law,” the CA said in granting the AMLC’s plea.

Associate Justice Celia Librea-Leagogo wrote the decision, which was concurred in by Associate Justices Bienvenido Reyes and Elihu Ybañez.

The accounts and properties in question belong to 28 members of the Ampatuan family members, led by patriarch Andal Ampatuan Sr. and suspended Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Governor Rizaldy “Zaldy” Ampatuan.”

As of this posting, GMA News Online was still trying to reach the Ampatuan lawyers, Philip Sigfrid Fortun and Redemberto Villanueva.

Andal Sr. and his relatives stand accused in the multiple murder trial over the Maguindanao massacre, where 57 people were killed, including 32 journalists. The carnage is said to be the worst politically-motivated violence in the Philippines.

Accounts, properties covered

The freeze order, effective for 20 days, covers the Ampatuans’ accounts and properties in the following agencies and banking institutions:

Allied Banking Corporation, Banco de Oro, Unibank Inc., Bank of the Philippine Islands, BPI Family Savings Bank, Coop Bank of Cotabato, Development Bank of the Philippines, East West Banking Corporation, Equicom Savings Bank Inc., Equitable Card Network Inc., Equitable PCI Bank, Land Bank of the Philippines, Metrobank Car Corporation, Metropolitan Bank and Trust Company, One Network RB Inc., Philam Equitable Life Assurance Company.

Philippine AXA Life Insurance Corporation, Philippine National Bank, Philippine Savings Bank, Planters Development Bank, PruLife Insurance Corporation of UK, RCBC Savings Bank, Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation, Security Bank Corporation, Standard Chartered Bank, Sterling Bank of Asia Inc., Toyota Financial Services Philippine Corporation, Union Bank of the Philippines, United Coconut Planters Bank, Philippine National Police Firearms and Explosives Office, Land Transportation Office, Register of Deeds of Davao City, Register of Deeds of Maguindanao and/or Cotabato City and Province of Maguindanao.

The order also covers properties including the Deal Gems and Jewelries Pawnshop and Maguindanao Electric Coop (Magelco), believed to be owned by the Ampatuans.

The appellate court directed these entities to inform the court and the AMLC of the following: account numbers and names of account owners, amount of monetary instrument, and property or related web accounts as of the time they are frozen.

AMLC petition

The AMLC had asked the Court of Appeals to issue the freeze order after finding alleged irregularities in the Ampatuans’ financial statements.

Citing the Commission on Audit’s (COA) Special Audit Report No. 2010-01, the council said that the Office of the Regional Governor of ARMM (Zaldy Ampatuan‘s office) received P19.9 billion and cash allocations of P17.169 billion from national government coffers.

Of the amount, P14.61 billion was supposedly transferred by Zaldy’s office to 25 ARMM line agencies and departments.

The COA report said that the money allotted for Zaldy’s office before his suspension in 2009 was “not properly utilized and managed.”

‘Wealth does not match income’

The AMLC said the lifestyle check on the Ampatuans led by Deputy Ombudsman for Mindanao Humphrey Monteroso indicating that the clans’ wealth does not match the legitimate income reported by family members.

The council noted that some P90 million was not declared in Andal Sr.’s Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN). It said that the clan patriarch has 27 houses in Cotabato City, Davao City, and Shariff Aguak, the capital of Maguindano province. However, he only declared P21.5 million worth of real properties when the amount should have been about P68 million, the AMLC said.

The council added that the patriarch owns at least 91 vehicles valued at P111 million, but only P45 million worth of vehicles was declared.

“It was concluded by the panel that even if the alleged undisclosed assets and properties were declared by Datu Andal Sr., in his SALNs, their aggregate value cannot be justified by the net or disposable income as derived from the annual income tax returns, leading to the conclusion that he amassed unexplained wealth manifestly and excessively out of proportion to his legitimate income from 2000 to 2009 in the aggregate amount of P188.42 million,” AMLC said in its petition. — VS, GMA News

[In the news] Ampatuans enjoy VIP treatment in jail — victims’ kin, lawyers – Interaksyon.com

Ampatuans enjoy VIP treatment in jail — victims’ kin, lawyers – Interaksyon.com.

MANILA, Philippines — Former Maguindanao governor Andal Ampatuan Sr. and his relatives accused of the most brutal mass murder in memory enjoy special treatment in jail, including out-of-jail passes, relatives and lawyers of the victims said Thursday.

A shouting match between the opposing parties occurred at the warden’s office when the prosecution team was stopped from going up to the Ampatuans in their detention cells even after Judge Jocelyn Solis-Reyes of Quezon City Regional Trial Court Branch 22 allowed an on-the-spot inspection at Wednesday’s hearing.

Harry Roque, lawyer of some of the victims’ relatives, said two lawyer-friends told him  they saw Andal Sr. dining at the posh Hotel Sofitel.

Maguindanao Gov. Ishmail Mangudadatu showed pictures of Andal Sr. sitting on a monobloc chair being given a massage by another inmate, of 11 people visiting Andal Sr. (even if an inmate was allowed only a maximum of three visitors each), and of the detention parking lot full of the Ampatuans’ luxury vehicles. He also said he has a video to prove that the Ampatuans get special treatment.

During a break at today’s hearing, relatives and lawyers of the 53 Ampatuan massacre victims rushed to the warden’s office so that they may be able to see for themselves the condition of Ampatuans’ detention.

But they were kept waiting for about an hour by the warden, Chief Inspector Glenford Valdepenas. Tension escalated when a lawyer of the Ampatuans, identified by a sister of one of the victims as Philip Ang, raised his voice, arguing against the on-the-spot inspection and said that only one from the prosecution and one from the defense will be allowed in the detention area.

“Bakit BJMP ka ba (Why, are you with the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology)? But we are also protected by law,” Mangungudatu said.

Roque argued that the relatives of all 53 victims are entitled to see the Ampatuans’ detention cells. If the number needs to be limited, there should be at least be a raffle that should also include the media, he said.

“Bakit may mga limit? May tinatago ba sila? (Why are they putting limitations? Are they hiding something?)” Roque said.

The commotion continued but Ang himself was able to sneak out of the warden’s office and go up to the detention area without any difficulty. When asked why he allowed Ang in, the jail guard on duty simply said: “E pumasok sya e (He simply entered).”

After the hearing, Mangungudatu went to the Department of Interior and Local Government to meet with Secretary Jesse Robredo to show him the pictures which indicate special VIP treatment for the Ampatuans.

Roque said he will also ask Robredo to compel Sofitel to show the contents of the closed-circuit television in the hotel that would prove what his lawyer-friends witnessed.

The Ampatuans are detained on the 3rd and 4th floors of the Quezon City Jail Annex inside Camp Bagong Diwa where the hearings are also being heard. The hearings are held on the first floor of the building.

[In the news] Surprise visits to Ampatuan jail cells proposed – Interaksyon.com

Surprise visits to Ampatuan jail cells proposed – Interaksyon.com.

Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon.com

MANILA, Philippines — Families of the victims of the Maguindanao massacre will press the government to allow them to conduct surprise visits on the detention facility of the members of the Ampatuan clan, principal suspects in the murder.

The families, who organized themselves into a group called Justice Now!, and the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) said they will submit their letter of request to Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Department of Justice (DoJ) for access to the Ampatuan jail amid reports that the powerful clan has been getting special treatment while in detention.

Rowena Paraan, NUJP secretary general, said Justice Now! and NUJP have received reports that the Ampatuans are getting special treatment and are enjoying perks while in detention such as having their own helpers, catered food, airconditioned room, and use of cellular phones.

Reports have also reached them that the Ampatuans were also able to leave the facility in the company of jail guards, according to Paraan.

“If somebody like (former Batangas governor Antonio) Leviste can get out of jail anytime he pleases, then it’s not far-fetched that it happens also to somebody like the Ampatuans, who are more powerful and wealthy than Leviste,” Paraan said.

Alwyn Alburo, NUJP vice president, said families of the victims want transparency from the government to see how it is treating the suspects in the gruesome murder.

Six members of the Ampatuan clan are currently in jail, namely, former Maguindanao governor Andal Ampatuan Sr., his son former Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) governor Rizaldy Ampatuan, former Datu Unsay mayor Andal Ampatuan Jr., former Shariff Aguak mayor Datu Anwar Ampatuan, former vice governor Datu Sajid Ampatuan, and former Mamasapano mayor Akmad Ampatuan.

The six are sharing a cell in Camp Bagong Diwa in Bicutan. The rest of the 90 suspects who have been arrested are also in the police camp.

There are at least 196 suspects believed involved in the murder of 57 people, including 32 media workers, on November 23, 2009 in Barangay Salman, Ampatuan town.

At the 18th month commemoration of the massacre held in the House of Representatives Monday, Edith Tiamzon, widow of one of the journalists killed, said they want to see the condition of the Ampatuans in jail to ensure they are not getting VIP treatment.

Tiamzon lamented that the case has dragged for a year-and-a-half now and that justice is still nowhere in sight.

Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr. said lawmakers are wondering, too, about the progress of the case.

“After 18 months, the House is asking, too, what happened to the case? We are one with the families and supporters of the victims in seeking justice,” he said.

Belmonte said he hopes that justice would soon be served the families of the victims to ease their pain of losing their loved ones.

“I’m thinking what made people like Datu Unsay think they can do it. Let’s say the area there was dominated by warlords, but then we have innate humanity. What gave them the mindset that they can commit such murder?” he added.

Quezon Representative Lorenzo Tanada III, the deputy speaker, appealed to the public not to forget about the massacre.

“As long as we never forget, we keep justice within reach…Our homage to the victims is our mark of vigilance,” he said.

Gabriela partlist Representatives Luz Ilagan and Emmi de Jesus and Bayan Muna partylist Representative Teddy Casino also attended the commemoration.