Taguig court sentences high-ranking CPP-NPA official in absentia to life in jail

Published July 1, 2022, 2:18 PM

by Tara Yap

BOCALA when she was freed by an Iloilo City court for the peace talks in Norway in 2016. (Tara Yap)
ILOILO CITY – A court in Metro Manila has sentenced a high-ranking official of the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) to life imprisonment for a 1975 murder.

A Taguig City court found Maria Concepcion “Concha” Araneta-Bocala guilty of the September 1975 murder of Metodio Inisa in Madalag, Aklan.

However, she is still at-large, according to Capt. Kim Apitong, Philippine Army 3rd Infantry Division (ID) spokesperson.

Apitong said that the 3rd ID has secured a copy of the June 21, 2022 decision issued by Judge Marivic Vitor.

In her 70s now, the Army considers her to be the deputy secretary of the CPP-NPA in Panay Island.

The Ilongga communist rebel was initially arrested in 1985 but subsequently released following the EDSA People Power Revolution in 1986. As a political prisoner, she was supposed to be under house arrest.

Bocala eventually escaped but was arrested in August 2015 for murder and rebellion charges.

A year later on August 2016, a court in Iloilo City granted Bocala bail for temporary liberty as a Visayas-based consultant of the National Democratic Front (NDF), the CPP arm that held peace talks with the government.

Bocala flew to Norway late in August 2016 for the peace talks. When the Duterte administration cancelled the negotiations with the NDF last August 2017, Bocala became at-large.

“She did not honor the agreement (when she was allowed to go for the peace talks),” added Apitong.