• Palparan’s arraignment reset

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    City of Malolos, Bulacan: The Regional Trial Court (RTC) here has reset to June 21 the arraignment of retired Philippine Army Major General Jovito Palparan for kidnapping and serious illegal detention charges after the Office of the Ombudsman failed to send its representative to the court.

    A warrant of arrest was also issued anew against Master Sgt. Rizal Hilario, alias “Rolly Castillo,” one of Palparan’s trusted men during his anti-insurgency operations in Bulacan who remain at large.

    Bulacan RTC Judge Francisco Felizmenio of Branch 19 is handling the cases against Palparan and several others upon resolution issued by the Office of the Ombudsman last year, seven years after the charges were filed in 2008.

    Palparan and Hilario, with seven para-military members from San Ildefonso town, are facing kidnapping and serious illegal detention charges filed by farmers and the Manalo brothers from Barangay Buhol na Mangga of the said town.

    Raymond Manalo and his brother Reynaldo were allegedly abducted by Palparan and his men on February 14, 2006 from their place in Buhol na Mangga and were held and tortured in different military camps before they managed to escape.

    Both Palparan and Hilario, along with Lt. Col. Felipe Anotado and Staff Sgt. Edgardo Osorio are also facing kidnapping and serious illegal detention charges before Branch 15 of the Bulacan RTC for the disappearance of UP students Sherlyn Cadapan and Karen Empeno in June 2006.

    Judge Teodora Gonzales of Branch 14 of the Bulacan RTC issued on 2011 a warrant of arrest against the four of them.

    Anotado and Osorio immediately surrendered while Palparan and Hilario went into hiding for years until Palparan was captured by authorities in August 2014. Hilario remains at large.

    FREDERICK SILVERIO

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