Immigration keeping a close watch on Julian Ongpin, Guevarra assures

Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra (2)

Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra said on Monday afternoon, Sept. 27, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) is keeping a close watch on Julian Roberto S. Ongpin who was charged with illegal possession of illegal drugs.

Julian, son of former Trade and Industry Minister Roberto V. Ongpin, was also a person of interest in the death last Sept. 18 of visual artist Breana “Bree” Jonson in San Juan, La Union.

Breana and Julian were together in a hostel room where the artist was found unconscious and later pronounced dead in a hospital where she was taken.

In the hostel room, the police recovered 12.6 grams of cocaine, a prohibited drug. It was the basis for the police to file illegal possession of prohibited drugs against Julian. But the La Union provincial prosecutor’s office released Julian for further investigation and filing of his counter-affidavit.

Both Julian and Breana tested positive for illegal drugs use, police reports stated.

The Department of Justice’s (DOJ) National Prosecution Service (NPS) had ordered the transfer to the DOJ in Manila of the investigation of the charges of illegal possession of dangerous drugs against Julian.

The transfer was requested by the regional office of the NPS.

Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque said that President Duterte “has instructed the criminal justice system of the country to accord the victim (Jonson) justice.”

Guevarra said: “I have already issued an ILBO (immigration lookout bulletin order) on Julian Ongpin to the Bureau of Immigration.”

He pointed out the issuance of an ILBO after the Philippine National Police (PNP) admitted that it does not know the whereabouts of Julian.

At the moment, Guevarra said there is no need yet for him to order the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to conduct a manhunt against Julian.

He explained that there are no charges yet filed against Julian in court.

“Let’s see if he will appear at the preliminary investigation at the DOJ. His presence or absence therein may give us a hint of things to come,” he added.