Another murder complaint filed by NBI vs Bantag – Sec Remulla

Another murder complaint was filed against former Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) director general Gerald Q. Bantag for the death in 2020 of a person deprived of liberty (PDL) at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) in Muntinlupa City.

Six other persons, aside from Bantag, were named in the complaint filed by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) for the death of PDL Hegel Lapinig Samson.

Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin C. Remulla said that Samson succumbed to asphyxiation due to a plastic bag placed over his head.

Also named in the murder complaint were former BuCor deputy security officer Ricardo S. Zulueta, Victor Erick L. Pascua, and Bilibid PDLs Rolando Villaver, Mark Angelo Lampera, Charlie Dacuyan and Wendell Sualog.

Describing Samson, Remulla said: “Ito ung may lumalabas sa social media Leon Bilibid describing the mysterious happenings inside Bilibid (He is the Leon Bilibid who has been narrating in social media the mysterious happenings inside the Bilibid).”

“May nagalit sa kanya. Death by plastic. (Someone got angry. He died due to asphyxiation from the use of a plastic bag),” he said.

Remulla said that the four PDLs have admitted their participation in the killing of Samson who was pronounced dead on arrival at the NBP Hospital on Nov. 7, 2020.

“They put a plastic bag over his head upon orders of some characters,” he said.

Bantag and Zulueta already have two murder cases filed before the regional trial courts (RTCs).

In Las Pinas City RTC, Bantag and Zulueta were charged for the death of radio broadcaster Percival “Percy Lapid” M. Mabasa.  Before the Muntinlupa City RTC, they were charged with the killing of PDL Cristito Villamor Palana, alleged middleman who contacted the killer of Mabasa.

Both trial courts have issued warrants of arrest against Bantag and Zuelieta who remained at-large.

The DOJ and the NBI have offered a P2-million reward for information that would lead to Bantag’s arrest. A reward of P1 million was offered for Zulueta’s arrest