Cops linked to Espinosa slay under police custody

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Mugshot of Supt. Marvin Marcos

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) - Nineteen cops involved in the killing of Albuera Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. went under police custody Monday after arrest warrants were released against them.

In a statement, the PNP said the policemen--including Police Supt. Marvin Marcos--voluntarily surrendered to the Region Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG-8) office in Visayas.


Marcos led a CIDG-8 unit which allegedly shot Espinosa, along with another inmate, on November 5, 2016 at the Leyte Sub-provincial Jail.

Espinosa was one of the government officials linked to the drug trade who surrendered to the PNP.

Initial reports said Espinosa died in a shootout with Marcos and his fellow police officers. The raiding team led by Marcos reportedly went to Espinosa's cell to serve a search warrant--and check the premises for illegal firearms and drugs.

However, an investigation by the National Bureau of Investigation concluded, the raiding team's real purpose was to murder Espinosa.

Espinosa's son, Kerwin--who confessed to being a drug lord--testified in a Senate inquiry that Marcos was taking payoffs, supposedly in exchange for protecting the younger Espinosa's drug trade in Region 8.

PNP said the arrest warrants of Marcos and 18 other CIDG-8 cops were issued March 16 by Judge Carlos O. Arguelles of Regional Trial Court Branch 14.

Other police personnel charged in Espinosa's killing include:

  1. PSupt. Santi Noel G. Matira
  2. PCInsp. Leo D. Laraga
  3. SPO4 Melvin M. Cayobit
  4. PO3 Johnny A. Ibañez
  5. PCInsp. Calixto C. Canillas Jr.
  6. SPO4 Juanito A. Duarte
  7. PO1 Lloyd O. Ortigueza
  8. PSInsp. Fritz B. Blanco
  9. PO1 Bhernard R. Orpilla
  10. PSInsp. Deogacias P. Diaz III
  11. SPO2 Benjamin L. Dacallos
  12. PO3 Norman T. Abellanosa
  13. PO1 Jerlan S. Cabiyaan
  14. PInsp Lucrecito A. Candilosas
  15. SPO2 Antonio R. Docil
  16. SPO1 Mark Christian Cadilo
  17. PO2 Jhon Ruel Doculan
  18. PO2 Jaime P. Bacsal

Each policeman is indicted for two counts of murder, an unbailable offense.

The Department of Justice also recommended the filing of an administrative case against the judge who issued the search warrant to Marcos and his men.