DAVAO CITY: The court proceedings at the Hall of Justice, including the arraignment of the three accused in the murder of Cebu City-based businessman Richard King were disrupted after two Regional Trial Court (RTC) branches received bomb threats from an anonymous caller on Friday.
An employee of RTC Branch 9 received a call from a man telling her: “may bomba akong inilagay dyan hindi ako nagbibiro [I placed a bomb there I am not joking]” and then hanged up.
The employee immediately informed her colleague about the threat and asked for police assistance. Police authorities were able to get the mobile number of the anonymous caller, which they are now tracking.
After 10 minutes, the stenographer of RTC Branch 10 also received a call from a man telling her, “Makinig ka may bomba ako inilagay dyan, pasabugin ko yan lahat di ako nagbibiro [You listen I placed a bomb there, I will let it explode, I am not joking].”
The second call prompted police to order all employees and visitors to leave the building.
The Special Weapons and Tactics team of the Davao City Police Office and the Army Explosive Ordnance Division of the searched offices. After an hour, they declared the building safe.
The incident, meanwhile, resulted in the postponement of the scheduled arraignment of Paul Dave Labang, Rommel dela Cerna and Rodel dela Cerna, who are the accused in the King murder case.
The three accused individuals arrived, but RTC Branch 16 Presiding Executive Judge Emmanuel Carpio rescheduled their arraignment.
This development will also delay the proceedings against Supt. Leonardo Felonia since the arraignment of the three accused was pursuant to the order of the Supreme Court, which granted the police officer’s petition to change the venue of hearing with regards to his case due to threats of his life in Davao City.