THE Manila police refused to release from detention one of the suspects in the fatal hazing of a freshman law student of the University of Santo Tomas (UST).
Supt. Erwin Margarejo, spokesman of the Manila Police District (MPD), said the release order sent by the Department of Justice (DOJ) failed to include “obstruction of justice”, one of five charges “for further investigation” that were filed against John Paul Solano.
“We filed five cases against Solano, namely murder, violation of anti-hazing law, perjury, robbery, and obstruction of justice. They did not mention obstruction of justice. They have to execute a supplemental resolution mentioning obstruction of justice,” Margarejo told The Manila Times.
Margarejo added that the MPD could implement the release order “but we will arrest him again for obstruction of justice”.
He said the evidence on obstruction of justice was very strong because of Solano’s conflicting statements, which he gave investigators.
The Manila police filed an anti-hazing case against 19 members of the Aegis Juris fraternity, including Solano.
Solano alleged that he found the bloated body of Horacio Castillo 3rd on the morning of Sept. 17 on a street in Balut, Tondo.
A Mitsubishi Strada driver by a certain Ralph Trangia helped Solano bring Castillo to the Chinese General Hospital where the victim was pronounced dead on arrival. Trangia fled to the US after.
Witness accounts and CCTV footage, however, indicated that Solano was lying.
CCTV in the area of Balut, Tondo showed that Solano had never been there neither was Castillo.
Solano also lied to the hospital guards, saying he did not know Solano and only acted as a “Good Samaritan.”
On Sept. 22, Solano surrendered to Sen. Panfilo Lacson who, in turn, turned him over to the MPD.