AGENTS of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) of the Philippine National Police (PNP) in Eastern Visayas have served a warrant of arrest against 20 police officers involved in the fatal shooting of jailed former Albuera (Leyte) Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. and another inmate last year.
PNP chief and Director General Ronald dela Rosa made the disclosure on Monday as the court issued the warrant of arrest for murder against the police officers led by Supt. Marvin Marcos, former chief of CIDG-Region 8.
“As of now, the warrant of arrest has been issued against them for murder and the CIDG in Region 8 has already served the warrant. All of them [police officers]are accounted for at CIDG-Region 8 and the warrant is set to be returned to the issuing court,” dela Rosa told a news briefing in Camp Crame in Quezon City.
Authorities, he said, were just waiting for orders from the court on where the accused police officers would be detained.
The PNP chief revealed that the PNP Internal Affairs Service is scheduled to release on March 31 its decision on an administrative case against the accused police officers.
Last month, the National Police Commission found probable cause to issue sanctions based on pieces of evidence gathered when Marcos and his team served a search warrant on Espinosa, who was killed in the Leyte provincial jail along with drug suspect Raul Yap on November 5, 2016.
Last week, a Senate report said the killing of Espinosa inside his cell at the Baybay City sub-provincial jail was premeditated and members of the CIDG-Region 8 should be held liable for it.
The Senate committees on public order and dangerous drugs and on justice and human rights that investigated Espinosa’s slay concluded that operatives of the CIDG led by Marcos abused their authority.
In a 34-page report, the joint committees said there was a systematic “clean up” of individuals involved in the Espinosa drug trade.
Besides the mayor, other drug suspects reportedly linked to the Espinosa drug operation such as Edgar Allan Alvarez and Fernando Balagbis also suffered the same fate.
Alvarez was killed inside the Abuyog Penal Colony in Leyte on August 11 after a group of policeman also led by Marcos raided his cell by virtue of a search warrant.
Balagbis was also killed in jail when he allegedly resisted and assaulted the police who raided his jail cell.