The Department of Justice has subpoenaed nine policemen to refute charges linking them to the death of four Army soldiers in Jolo, Sulu recently.
In a message to reporters, Prosecutor General Benedicto Malcontento disclosed that the policemen have been given 10 days to file their counter-affidavits.
Facing murder and planting of evidence complaints were Staff Sgts. Almudzrin Hadjaruddin, Iskandar Susulan and Ernisar Sappal; Patrolmen Alkajal Mandangan, Rajiv Putalan and Moh Nur Pasani; Senior M/Sgt. Abdelzhimar Padjiri, M/Sgt. Hanie Baddiri and Cpl Sulki Andaki.
Also charged with neglect of duty under the principle of command responsibility were PCol Michael Bayawan head of the Sulu Provincial Police Office, PMaj Walter Annayo head f the Jolo Municipal Police Station and PCPT Ariel J Corcino of the Provincial Drug Enforcement Unit.
The National Bureau of Investigation conducted an independent probe into the alleged misencounter between Army officers and policemen in Jolo, Sulu after the leadership of the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines have been giving conflicting versions.
The fatalities were identified in a police report from the Jolo municipal police station as Maj.Arvin Indamog, commanding officer of the Army’s 9th Intelligence Service Unit (9ISU), Capt. Irwin Managuelod, field station commander, and intelligence operatives Sgt. Eric Velasco and Cpl. Abdal Asula.
Reports from the Sulu Provincial Police Office said the policemen involved claimed self-defense after the soldiers supposedly lifted and pointed their firearms first to the police.
The Army, however, refuted the claims, calling the initial police report as “fabricated” and “misleading.”