Philippine National Police chief Director General Oscar D. Albayalde on Thursday ordered the administrative relief of the Nueva Vizcaya Police Provincial Office director and the chief of police of the Aritao municipal police station for releasing to the family of slain National Democratic Front consultant Felix Randy Malayao Jr. vital pieces of evidence in the investigation of the case which is in violation of existing PNP investigative procedures.
Following the PNP chief’s directive, Police Regional Office 2 director Chief Superintendent Jose Mario M. Espino relieved Nueva Vizcaya police director Senior Supt. Jeremias Agglugub and Aritao MPS head Chief Inspector Geovanni Cejes and ordered them temporarily assigned at the PRO2 headquarters.
“We have lost thousands of valuable intelligence information about the CPP/NPA/NDF including their leaders led by Jose Ma. Sison with the release of the laptop computer, six cell phones and other valuable pieces of evidence found in the victim’s possession to his family,” Espino told Albayalde and Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo M. Año.
Espino said he requested Secretary Año to cause the return of the pieces of evidence which are now under the custody of a sister of Malayao identified as Perla Malayao Upano.
“We are seeking the return of the pieces of evidence. They could not tamper with them or else, we will be forced to file charges for obstruction of justice against them,” Espino said.
The Cagayan Valley police director said that Malayao, whom he described as a former New People’s Army leader and current head of the CPP-NPA-NDF’s Regional White Area Committee 2 under the Executive Committee of the Komiteng Rehiyon-Cagayan Valley, turned out to have two siblings who are both DILG officials -- Antonio Malayao of the DILG office in Benito Soliven, Isabela and Upano of the DILG National Capital Region Office.
He said during the course of the investigation into the killing of Malayao, Malayao-Upano forced Cejes to release the personal belongings of his brother such as one Apple laptop computer, two Nokia cellphones, one Iphone unit, one Samsung cellphone, one MyPhone mobile phone, one Apple I-pod, one Toshiba external memory, one combo card reader, two units of Micro SD Card, two Micro SD card readers and other vital evidence to them.
He added that Rina Balgos, a former Nueva Vizcaya provincial board member and a known close associate of Nueva Vizcaya Representative Luisa Lloren Cuaresma, threatened to subject the police officer to a congressional investigation.
“Baka gusto mong mapadala sa Kongreso,” the official quoted Balgos as telling Cejes.
Espino said the husband of Balgos and legal consultant of Karapatan, laywer Edu Balgos, also told Cejes he has no right to hold on to the personal belongings of the victim.
“Anong karapatan mo na i-hold ang mga gamit ng biktima. Violation ng human rights yan. Di mo ba alam ang ginagawa mo,”the lawyer reportedly told the police chief.
As a result, Cejes released the pieces of evidence to the victim’s family, an action which Espino said constitute gross violation of police standard operating procedures during crime investigation.
Espino said Agglugub was relieved for failing to fully supervise the investigation into the case.