Parricide case vs Boniel stays in Lapu-Lapu city

Published March 28, 2018, 10:55 AM

by iManila Developer

By Jeffrey Damicog

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has decided not to withdraw the parricide case at the Lapu-Lapu City Regional Trial Court (RTC) against Bohol Provincial Board Member Nino Rey Boniel over the alleged killing of his wife, Bien Unido town Mayor Gisela.

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II gives a message regarding the current status of the National Bilibid Prison during a media briefing on Oplan: Digmaang Droga, DOJ's campaign to eliminate the illegal drug trade at the state penitentiary, in DOJ in Padre Faura Street in Ermita, Manila. (John Jerome Ganzon/ Manila Bulletin)
Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II (John Jerome Ganzon/ Manila Bulletin)

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre granted the motion for reconsideration of the Philippine National Police (PNP) not to pull out the parricide case against Boniel and the murder case against his co-conspirators—Willy Hoylar and Restituto Magoncia, Jr.—before the Lapu-Lapu City RTC.

“Our resolution of the Motion for Reconsideration in this case clearly manifests that the Office of the Secretary of Justice will not be a party to any perceived miscarriage of justice,” Aguirre said in a statement.

“We will apply the law and the pertinent rule without fear or favor in any case,” he assured.

Mayor Gisela was allegedly taken from the Bien Unido Dive Camp in Bohol during a pre-dawn abduction on July 7, 2017 and was then taken aboard a pump boat to the waters between Caubian and Olango islands where she was shot dead and her body dumped into the waters.

Her close friend, Angela Leyson, claimed she recognized one of the men in bonnets at the Dive Camp as Board Member Boniel, while, witness Riolito Boniel testified as the one who drove the pump boat and saw the Board Member Boniel kill Mayor Gisela.

However, Undersecretary Reynante Orceo issued a ruling which granted the Board Member Boniel’s petition for review and ordered the withdrawal of the case as he declared that the Lapu-Lapu City Prosecutor’s Office has no jurisdiction to handle the case and file it before the Lapu-Lapu City RTC.

Orceo also pointed out that a kidnapping complaint is pending before the Bohol Prosecutor’s Office and, should it find probable cause to indict Board Member Boniel, “the charge would be one for the special complex crime of kidnapping with murder, whereby the killing would not be treated separately from kidnapping.”

In his resolution, Aguirre pointed out “the Information for Parricide sufficiently alleges that the offense was committed within the waters of Lapu-Lapu City where Nino Boniel killed his wife and thereafter dumped the body thereat.”

“To rule that there is multiplicity of actions would run counter to that fundamental rule that venue is jurisdictional in criminal cases. As such, the complaint was properly filed with and the case must rightly be tried in the Regional Trial Court of Lapu-lapu City,” read Aguirre’s resolution.

“To clarify, an information for Parricide has already been filed with the Regional Trial Court of Lapu-lapu City. In effect, it already took cognizance of the case of Parricide. To rule that the information for Parricide should be withdrawn because of an alleged lack of jurisdiction would be violative of the rule on Adherence to Jurisdiction,” he pointed out in the resolution.