Dismissed cops involved in Jolo shooting incident released from PNP custody

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 11) — The Philippine National Police has released from its custody the nine dismissed cops involved in the shooting incident that left four Army intelligence personnel dead in Jolo, Sulu last June.

PNP spokesperson Brigadier Gen. Ildebrandi Usana confirmed this to CNN Philippines on Monday.

"Nirelease na po sila from control of the PNP. They are no longer police personnel following their dismissal from the service which is immediately executory. We presume they are back to their family na po," Usana said.

[Translation: They were released from the control of the PNP. They are no longer police personnel following their dismissal from the service which is immediately executory. We presume they are back with their families.]

The policemen were earlier dismissed from service.

In a statement on Monday, the Armed Forces of the Philippines said AFP Chief-of-Staff General Gilbert Gapay is "extremely disappointed" with the release of the policemen.

"It is only unfortunate that despite the DOJ’s filing online of a multiple murder case before the Regional Trial Court in Jolo last January 4, 2021, no warrants of arrest have been issued by the court," the statement read.

The Sulu provincial police office initially said the cops claimed self-defense, but later in a Senate investigation, the accused officers admitted they were not sure who fired first between them and the intelligence agents.

The National Bureau of Investigation has also filed murder and planting of evidence charges against the cops involved.