By Jeffrey Damicog
The Quezon City Regional Trial Court (RTC) has concluded the trial and is set to resolve the 2009 Maguindanao massacre case, the Department of Justice (DOJ) said on Monday.
Acting Prosecutor General Richard Anthony Fadullon said that he has been informed by the panel of prosecutors handling the case that the case has been submitted for resolution before QC RTC Branch 221.
“Submitted for decision as per info from the panel,” Fadullon disclosed.
“The promulgation date has not yet been set,” he said in Pilipino.
Earlier, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra has expressed hope that a court decision will be made next year concerning the case.
“This is a long running case but I’m glad to inform the people that we are now winding up with the trial of this case,” he had said earlier.
There 197 defendants in the case accused of the deaths of 58 persons including 33 journalists on November 23, 2009
On that day, the victims were killed in Ampatuan, Maguindanao province, while on their way to file the certificate of candidacy of Esmael Mangudadatu to run for governor.
The members of the ruling Ampatuan clan were accused as the masterminds of the massacre to deter Mangudadatu from running.
One of the 197 accused, former Maguindanao Gov. Andal Ampatuan Sr., passed away while he was in detention.
On the other hand, his co-accused and son, former Datu Unsay Mayor Andal Jr., has been granted bail.