Another complaint filed vs Aquino, Purisima

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ANOTHER complaint was filed Friday against former President Benigno Aquino 3rd, former Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Alan Purisima and former Special Action Force (SAF) director Getulio Napeñas for the killing of police commandos in Mamasapano, Maguindanao last year.

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Charges of reckless imprudence resulting in multiple homicide were filed at the Office of the Ombudsman in connection with the anti-terrorist police operation that left 44 SAF members dead.

The operation, known as Oplan Exodus, resulted in the killing of international terrorist Zulkifli bin Hir alias Marwan.

The complainants — Telly Submilla, Helen Ramacula and Lorna Sagonoy asked the Ombudsman to conduct a preliminary investigation and upon a finding of probable cause, file 44 criminal charges against the former government officials.

Submilla, Ramacula and Sagonoy, who all hail from Eastern Samar, were the mothers respectively of PO3 John Lloyd Submilla, PO2 Rodel Ramacula, and PO1 Joseph Sagonoy.

“We want to attain justice for our sons. We want justice because sometimes I wake up and I know why they were killed. They only obeyed the order of PNoy and then they were just neglected. Not a single chopper was flown,” Submilla told reporters in an interview.

“That is so painful for us parents, that they were neglected. They were killed only because they obeyed orders and then they were left without aid,” she added.

The complainants said the evidence from the findings of the Senate and the PNP Board of
Inquiry “indubitably establish more than probable cause that the herein Respondents acted with inexcusable negligence and imprudence, utter lack of precaution and foresight on their part and they are therefore probably guilty of criminal negligence and reckless imprudence, which were the direct and proximate causes of the death of the forty-four (44) members of the PNP-SAF as enumerated above.”

They said Aquino “helped plan ‘Oplan Exodus’ with gross and inexcusable negligence, and thereafter approved the operation with full knowledge that it was flawed.”

They added that the former president allowed Purisima to participate in the planning of the operation despite the latter’s suspension at the time.

“This was illegal and improper, and smacks of criminal and inexcusable negligence, because it is of common knowledge that at that time, Respondent Purisima was incapable of discharging the functions of Chief of the PNP due to a subsisting suspension by the Office of the Ombudsman,” the complaint said.

“What is worse, after the SAF elements were trapped, Respondent Aquino — the Commander-in-Chief did not lift a finger to rescue ‘his soldiers’.”

The Ombudsman has already ordered the filing of charges at the Sandiganbayan against Purisima and Napeñas for their participation in the mounting of the police operation.

The charges were for violation of Section 3(a) of Republic Act No. 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and Usurpation of Authority or Official Function.

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