Devanadera assures criminal raps will be filed vs people behind Maguindanao massacre

November 25, 2009 12:09 pm 

MANILA, Nov. 25 — Department of Justice (DOJ) Acting Secretary and concurrent Solicitor General Agnes Devanadera assured on Wednesday that criminal charges will be filed against the perpetrators of the massacre of at least 46 people in Maguindanao on Monday.

Denavadera formed a panel of prosecutors to assist the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Task Force Against Media Killings (Task Force 211) to immediately conduct an investigation of the gruesome killing.

The panel is headed by Senior State Prosecutor Philip Kimpo, with the following as members: State Prosecutors Bernardo Parico, Rene Gingoyon, Bunrofil Altares, Aldrin Evangelista and Lamberto Fabros, Maguindanao Provincial Prosecutor Rami Guiling and Shariff Kabunsuan Provincial Prosecutor Akilali Balt.

"I will be getting in touch with the Philippine National Police on whatever evidence they have already gathered," Devanadera said.

However, the DOJ chief clarified that she would not want to interfere in the investigation being conducted by the PNP at present, in the sense that they have not yet talked about the incident.

"I assure you, as far as the department (DOJ) is concerned, if there is a case, charges will be filed against those responsible," Devanadera said.

"The Department of Justice shall expedite the investigation of these cases until the perpetrators thereof have been arrested and prosecuted to its successful conclusion," Devanadera stressed.

Task Force 211 head Undersecretary Ricardo Blancaflor has joined the DOJ-NBI team and immediately proceeded to Maguindanao to supervise the investigation.

Earlier reports said among the massacre victims were the wife of Buluan, Maguindanao Vice Mayor Ismael Mangudadatu, two lawyers and at least 12 reporters. (PNA) scs/PTR

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