Double murder raps filed vs sacked Tayabas City top cop, 2 men

March 23, 2019
Mark Joseph Laygo
CHARGED. Accused Tayabas City police commander Supt. Mark Joseph Laygo (right) and his men, PO2 Lonald Sumalpong and PO3 Robert Legazpi, were charged yesterday with double murder at the Lucena City Prosecutor’s Office. Photo by Gemi Formaran

LUCENA CITY — The National Bureau of Investigation yesterday filed double murder charges before the City Prosecutor’s Office against the relieved police chief of the Tayabas City Police Station and two of his men over the killing of a Quezon mayor’s son and a companion last March 14.

Former Tayabas City police commander Supt. Mark Joseph Laygo, who was accused of masterminding the killing of Christian Gayeta, the 21-year-old son of Sariaya, Quezon Mayor Marcelo Gayeta, and Christopher Manalo, 38, was brought to the office of City Prosecutor Alfredo Juarez around 10 a.m. yesterday.

Also charged were Laygo’s co-accused, PO3 Robert Legazpi and PO2 Lonald Sumalpong.

Legazpi and Sumalpong were tagged as the ones who pulled the trigger during the alleged rubout.

The three policemen on Friday surrendered to their fellow officers.

Accompanied by NBI-Quezon agent-in-charge Dominador Villanueva and Quezon police director Sr. Supt. Joseph Arguelles, the three were escorted by heavily-armed policemen on their way to Tayabas City from the Quezon Police Provincial Office in Lucena City.

City Prosecutor Alfredo Juarez gave the accused policemen five days to file a counter affidavit.

Arguelles said the accused will be temporarily detained at the headquarters of the Quezon Provincial Mobile Force Company in Camp Dolor, Candelaria, Quezon.

Mayor Gayeta expressed relief with the latest development, seeing the accused handcuffed and detained.

“Dahil sa nangyayari ngayon, bahagyang nabawasan ang galit sa aming dibdib. At gumaan kahit paano ang bigat ng aming pakiramdam. Salamat sa Diyos at sa mga taong tumutulong sa amin para makamit ang hinihingi naming katarungan,” the mayor said.