NBI-DID takes on Dacera case

Published January 9, 2021, 1:56 PM

by Jeffrey Damicog

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI)-Death Investigation Division has been assigned to investigate the death of flight attendant Christine Dacera on New Year’s Day.

NBI Officer-in-Charge Director Eric Distor assigned the case to the NBI-DID which is under the NBI Investigative Service headed by Deputy Director Vicente de Guzman III.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra issued Department Order No. 6 last Friday directing the NBI “to conduct an investigation on the death of Christine F. Dacera, who died on 01 January 2021 in Makati City and, if evidence warrants, to file the appropriate charges against all persons involved and found responsible for any unlawful act in connection therewith.”

Guevarra also instructed directed Distor “to submit reports on the progress of the subject investigation directly to the Office of the Secretary within 10 days and periodically thereafter.”

The Justice Secretary issued the order amid criticisms that the Philippine National Police (PNP) bungled its investigation on the death of Dacera.

“With all due respect, the initial investigation by the Makati police was not thorough enough, prompting the inquest prosecutors to refer the case for further investigation and release the respondents in the meantime,” Guevarra had said.

“From the DoJ’s viewpoint, the case build-up will be faster if the NBI acts independently,” Guevarra stressed.

The Makati City Prosecutor’s Office issued a resolution which determined that the PNP submitted insufficient evidence in filing the complaint against 11 men who were accused of rape with homicide over the death of Dacera.

Because of this, the Makati City Prosecutor’s Office decided to conduct a preliminary investigation of the complaint starting Jan. 13 and ordered the PNP to release the arrested suspects.

During the preliminary investigation, the PNP will be given the opportunity to submit additional evidence while the suspects will get the chance to defend themselves.