Javier slay convict Javellana denies plotting to kill Judge Castrojas
By Alex P. Vidal/ PNS
February 1, 2005
SAN JOSE, Antique
-- Detained lawyer Avelino “Bob” Javellana said he “may have been annoyed”
by the decision of Regional Trial Court Judge Rudy Castrojas convicting him
in the assassination of former Antique Gov. Evelio Javier, but plotting to
kill Castrojas “did not ever come up” in his mind.
He said he would rather solve his problem in court than resort to physical
Javellana, who is now detained at the Antique provincial jail, is being
suspected as behind the alleged plot to kill Castrojas, reports said.
In December 23 last year, Eleazar Idemne, the other convict in the
much-celebrated murder case, was reportedly spotted in Pototan, Iloilo
“looking for a gun-for-hire.”
Castrojas himself admitted he had been informed about the murder plot
against him. After rendering a verdict on the Javier case, teary-eyed
Castrojas specifically called Javellana as his “good friend” and lamented
Javellana’s failure to put up a good defense “despite his reputation as a
Javellana and Idemne, along with John Paloy, Henry Seguera, Vicente Vegafria,
Ramon Hortillano, Henry Salaver, Eleazar Idemne and Rolando Bernardino, were
found guilty by Castrojas in October last year in the cold-blooded killing
of Javier in 1986.
Idemne, together with four men armed with M16 rifles, was reportedly seen
visiting the house of Pototan councilor Fruelin “Palpal” Cordero.
Pototan Mayor Pedro Perez reportedly had confirmed Idemne went to Cordero’s
house but was told Idemne only asked for a share from Cordero’s winning
purse in a cockfight.
After Pototan, Idemne allegedly went to Mandurriao and in Lapuz, La Paz
where he met a prominent family that would have helped him hire a triggerman
to kill Castrojas.
“I’m not aware of it (murder plot against Castrojas),” Javellana told Aksyon
Javellana said they “mind their own business” inside the jail.
“I don’t have the capability to kill him. The fight is in the court and not
physical. I’m a lawyer,” Javellana said.
Javellana, however, did not hide his disappointment with Castrojas’ decision
to convict him. He said aside from being a judge, Castrojas was also the
accuser and fiscal in the case. But the inmate said he would prove Castrojas
was wrong in his decision.
Javellana also defended Idemne saying “he could not see in the character of
his fellow convict to kill somebody.”
As this developed, Antique Gov. Salvacion Perez vowed to conduct an
investigation on how Idemne was able to go out from his detention cell.
She said she would summon the jail warden to explain the incident.
Perez said there was no any clearance from her office to allow Idemne to
leave the jail.
Meanwhile, she said the provincial government is seeking for a budget to
transport all the convicts in Javier case to the New Bilibid Prison in Metro
Last November, highly-placed sources said Seguera was seen with several jail
guards inside a cockpit in
Reports added that some of the suspects in various crimes in Antique were
inmates in the Antique provincial jail.
Alarmed by the report, Senior Supt. Ronilo Quebrar, Antique police chief,
asked provincial warden Berly Oteda to investigate the matter.
Quebrar said he received information that Allan Ellaga, the suspect in the
killing of one Elmer Yangga in Sibalom town in October was a detainee since
Quebrar also said he received another report that an inmate was involved in
a controversial quarrying in Seco Island, Tibiao town.
Gideon, son of slain ex-governor Javier, said he was not surprised by
reports that a convict in the case of his father was seen outside the
He said he had raised the issue before but the provincial government did not
take any action on the matter.
“I’m not really surprised. There is a serious problem going on for several
years now,” he said.
He said his family have videotapes of Javellana shopping in a mall before
the decision was handed down on Javier case.
8ID troops encounter terrorists in Leyte
CROMWELL I. DANGANAN, (INF) PA
CAMP LUKBAN, Catbalogan, Samar –
8th Infantry Division (8ID), Phil Army troops encountered a Band of
Terrorists this morning in two separate encounters in
In the report given to the
8ID General Officer-In-Charge, BGen Bonifacio B. Ramos by BGen Juanito P.
Cabayao, Commanding General of 802nd Infantry Brigade, disclosed that
elements of 19th Infantry Battalion while conducting combat operations at
vicinity Sitio Kapinyahan, Barangay Damulaan, Albuera,
Leyte encountered more or less 40 fully-armed Communists
Terrorists (CTs) at exactly
5:00 o’clock on the morning
today. The operation was hatched after the civilians in the said barangay
tipped-off the location of the NPA terrorist group conducting extortion
activities in the area. Moving on a rugged terrain, the soldiers arrived at
the area unnoticed and encountered the CTs believed to be headed by CT
Leader alias Ka BIONG, of the Wendel Dulinog Command (WDC), North East Leyte
Front, Eastern Visayas Regional Party Committee (EVRPC) operating in the
Firefight ensued for about
twenty (20) minutes with running gun battle forcing the enemy to withdraw
towards different directions leaving one (1) of their comrade dead
identified only as alias Ka AN-AN, and two (2) wounded identified as alias Ka
Sarah Decano, a resident of Poblacion, Albuera, Leyte and alias Ka Sunshine Patun-og
(special report), a resident of Barangay Mabini, Ormoc City. Wounded CTs were
immediately evacuated to the Ormoc Doctors Hospital for medical treatment
while the killed (Ka AN-AN) and the captured CT identified as alias Ka
Mutya Sabidillas, a resident of Barangay Ipil, Ormoc City were turned-over
to the Albuera Municipal Police Office for identification and proper
disposition. Reportedly, there were undetermined number of wounded CTs as
evidenced by the numerous bloodstains along their route of withdrawal. No
one was hurt on the government side. Recovered from the scene of encounter
were two (2) Caliber .38 revolvers and ammunitions, CTs’ personal belongings
and voluminous subversive documents of high intelligence value.
In another development,
operating elements of Charlie Company, 43rd Infantry Battalion while
conducting combat operations at vicinity Sitio Naba, Kabungahan, Baybay,
Leyte encountered more of less thirty (30) fully-armed CTs headed by CT
Leader Glecerio Roluna alias Jay-Ar, Secretary SECOM – HIPOLITA, Southern
Leyte Front, Eastern Visayas Regional Party Committee (EVRPC) at about 6:00
o’clock in the morning of the same day. Firefight ensued for about fifteen
(15) minutes that resulted to the death of Sgt Elmer Tualla and wounding of
2Lt Husain Esmael and Cpl Jose Mari Sulivan while undetermined casualties
were reported on the enemy side. Recovered from the encounter scene were CTs’
personal belongings, voluminous subversive documents and other CT
BGen Ramos on the other
hand, extended his appreciation to the people of Leyte for their support and
cooperation provided to the operating units of the 802nd Infantry Brigade by
pointing out the exact locations of the Communist Terrorists (CTs) operating
in the area. The encounter is a product of accurate intelligence information
provided by the local populace who are against the CTs’ harassment and
extortion activities, a clear manifestation that they desire peace and
stability in their locality, Ramos added.
Operating troops are still
conducting pursuit operations to locate and intercept the withdrawing
Army in control, ready for NPA attacks
CROMWELL I. DANGANAN, (INF) PA
CAMP LUKBAN, Catbalogan,
Samar - Despite constant threats by the New People’s Army (NPA) of impending
tactical offensives against government forces, the 8th Infantry Division,
Philippine Army brushed aside these threats. The 8ID led by Brig Gen.
Bonifacio B. Ramos is one in the belief that the NPA terrorists may resort
to desperate acts this year because they have tremendously weakened in
Many rebels have surrendered
since last year, many of them exposing unacceptable rules and regulations
while inside the movement. “I wasted my life inside the movement,” said
Gregorio Tadeos alias Ka Amir/Karis who was recently captured by military
authorities. “Magpapakita ng maganda sa una. Sa paglaon, hindi na
pantay-pantay ang trato. Masiba ang mga lider sa pera na galing sa
pangongotong sa mga naghihirap na mga mamamayan,” he added.
The NPA terrorists and their
cohorts may try to stage terrorist attacks in the region in the coming
days. But the Philippine Army again belittled this and took it as a bluff
by the NPA.
“They can wage war if they
want to,“ said Gen Ramos. “And we will give it to them.” The 8ID General
Officer-in-Charge said that the Army is not fazed by the intimidation and
harassment of the CPP-NPA-NDF. “We have not only good fighting men, but the
overwhelming support of the masses. This is our advantage over them. I
have ordered all unit commanders to prepare and fight to the hilt if need
be, to thwart any attempt by these NPA terrorists. They are now out rightly
violating the rights of poor citizens,” added Rabonza.
The 8th Infantry Division is
credited for the continued surrender of NPA members. The fruits of their
labor to reach out to communities with potential NPA influence has gained
positive results. The people now know that they should help the government
and the AFP in particular to fight terrorism. They will not allow the NPA
to further destroy their future and those of their loved ones.
PHILRICE, CODA agree to test, evaluate Bt cotton
January 20, 2005
PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE -- The Philippine Rice Research Institute (PHILRICE)
and the Cotton Development Administration (CODA) on Wednesday, January 19,
entered into a joint agreement to locally test and evaluate locally produced
memorandum of agreement (MOA) signed by Executive Director Leocadio
Sebastian in behalf of PHILRICE and Administrator Eugenio Orpia, Jr. of CODA
opens new doors to the introduction of Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) cotton to
commercial availability and viability in the local market.
Government agriculturists said Bt cotton is a variety developed through
genetic engineering. It has shown highly improved production in 16 Bt
cotton-growing countries like
Canada, Argentina, India, Indonesia, Thailand and the United States. Bt
cotton has the ability to control the dreaded bollworm.
cotton is also known as an insect-damage-immune crop that contains
naturally-occurring substance called Bt protein. The production of this
protein directly by cotton plants has virtually revolutionized insect
demand for Bt cotton increased as more and more countries have shifted to
the propagation of Bt cotton. There has been a significant upswing in the
export of Bt cotton.
Philippines continues to import 95 percent of its cotton requirement from
the US, Australia and Pakistan. With China entering the market as a supplier
of Bt cotton, the country will likewise be dependent on Chinese Bt cotton as
Director Alice Ilaga of the Department of Agriculture-Biotechnology Program
Implementing Unit (DA-BPIU) said, nearly half of the country’s cotton
imports comes from Bt-growing countries. In 2002, more than 20 percent of
total cotton planted all over the world was Bt cotton, with Australia and
the US among the most significant planters.
agreement between PHILRICE and CODA marks the start of our local testing and
evaluation of the Chinese transgenic cotton hybrids,” Ilaga said. “The DA
biotech program facilitated the acquisition of the technology from China and
this will be the first time to test it under local growing conditions. If
found safe, we will go ahead.”
noted that the role of PHILRICE is to provide shuttle research of Bt cotton
at its existing biotechnology facilities in Munoz, Nueva Ecija and other
CODA research stations in Luzon,
country will benefit from homegrown Bt cotton and save an estimated $86
million in import costs yearly,” Ilaga said. The DA, through CODA, can now
introduce Bt cotton as an alternative to conventionally-bred varieties. “If
this happens, farmers can increase their income from planting Bt cotton, and
textile millers will have a local source for good-quality fiber.”
Exporting firm resumes operation despite NPA threats
By CPT CROMWELL I. DANGANAN,
January 15, 2005
CAMP LUKBAN, Catbalogan, Samar – For the
first time in the history of the country, a company harassed and intimidated
by the Communist Terrorists, resulting to its sudden temporary closure,
resumed operation due to the convergence efforts of concerned local
government, government agencies and the civilian sector, who desires peace
and stability in the region.
This is the story of the
Eastern Visayas Seafood Corporation, a private Company exporting blue crab
meat based in Barangay Luna, Ormoc City
which resumed its operation on January 7, 2005, discarding the threat posed
by Mt. Amandewin Command of the New People’s Army operating in the Eastern Visayas region.
The Company ceased its
operation last November 12, 2004 due to the series of attempted harassment
and intimidation made by the CPP/NPA through extortions letters signed by
its spokesperson named Ka Dodong Maglaya dated January 5 and September 2,
2004 respectively, insisting on their so called “revolutionary tax”
amounting to P1.25 million. The closure resulted in the displacement of 201
workers, an untimely period as the yuletide season is fast approaching.
The CPP/NPA denied the real
issue and pointed that mass lay-off and not revolutionary taxation was
behind the closure. They attributed the closure to the alleged non-payment
of Christmas benefits, poor working condition, and underpayment, among other
On December 2, 2004, a
dialogue with workers was sponsored by the City Government of Ormoc, DOLE,
RO8 PNP, Lakas Pinoy and the 8th Infantry Division represented by
BGen. Juanito P. Cabayao Jr, Commanding General of the 802nd
Infantry Brigade, at the Ormoc City
Superdome. The alleged issues were strongly denied by the workers themselves
as they have a good working relationship with the management of the said
company. They also expressed their condemnation against the CPP/NPA’s
On December 17, 2004,
despite its non-operation, the management made good their promise to give
the 13th month pay to the displaced workers.
Finally on January 7, 2005,
the Eastern Visayas Seafood Corporation re-opened and resumed its operation
following the commitment given by the local government of Ormoc City, the
Philippine National Police and the 8th Infantry Division,
Philippine Army, as well as the workers themselves and the civilian
community, to fully support and provide security to the factory as it is the
only source of income of its workers.
Following this observation,
it can be gleaned that CPP/NPA extortion activities can be thwarted. Their
extortions will not prosper if we will not bend to their demands.
The 8th Infantry
Division, Philippine Army now under the leadership of BGen. Bonifacio B.
Ramos, gave his assurance to continue performing its mandate of securing the
people, vital installations and other business establishments. To
successfully attain this, the cooperation of the different government
agencies, local government units, non-government organizations and other
concerned individuals are vital for the convergence of efforts so that the
root cause of the problem can be addressed outright. It is imperative to
eradicate these pestering acts of the communist terrorist by all possible
legal means so that we can entice tourists as well as investors both foreign
and local to do business in the country which will ultimately generate
employment for our countrymen.
The re-opening of the
factory is a quantum leap in fighting the insurgency problem and serves as a
wake-up call to all, not only to investors, but also to the local
government, government agencies, contractors, businessmen, professionals and
even the local populace not to give in to the caprices of the CTs, and
instead they should cooperate and report any similar incident to the
authorities to put an end to insurgency.
MGen. Rabonza relinquish 8ID Command
CPT CROMWELL I. DANGANAN, (INF) PA
January 5, 2004
CAMP LUKBAN, Catbalogan, Samar –
Brigadier General Bonifacio B. Ramos took over as 8ID General
Officer-in-Charge vice Major General Glenn J. Rabonza who will be retiring
on January 12, 2005, his 56th birthday.
In a simple ceremony held
at the 8ID grandstand, MGen. Rabonza relinquished his command as the
Commanding General, 8th Infantry Division to BGen. Ramos with the Commanding
General of the Philippine Army, Lt Gen Generoso S. Senga as the Presiding
Officer. MGen. Rabonza was awarded the Distinguished Service Star and the
Philippine Army Command Plaque for his outstanding and exemplary service as
Division Commander of 8ID from 10 February 2003 to 4 January 2005.
In his farewell speech,
MGen. Rabonza acknowledged the members of the 8ID TEAM: the officers,
enlisted personnel and military dependents, while expressing his sincere
appreciation, for the support they have rendered during his incumbency. The
outgoing commander even emphasized to the local government officials present
that, “the fight against the Communist Terrorists is not just a fight of the
soldiers, but a fight of every peace loving Filipino.” He further emphasized
the value of teamwork, dedication to duty, and the need to have convergence
efforts with all concerned agencies and NGOs. Likewise, he called for the
strengthening of the Strategy of Holistic Approach in combating insurgency;
and the intensification of the command relationship between the AFP and the
PNP especially in the Internal Security Operations aspect.
In his acceptance speech,
BGen. Ramos expressed his utmost appreciation for having been given the
opportunity to serve as General Office-in-Charge of 8ID, until such time
that a new Commanding General be appointed to the post. He has been the
Assistant Division Commander for over a year under MGen. Rabonza. BGen.
Ramos hails from Maasin City and a member of PMA Class 1975.
The Commanding General of
the Philippine Army, LtGen. Senga, on his part, congratulated the out going
CG, 8ID, for a “Job Well Done”, as latter takes credit for the significant
transformation of the Command during his stint as 8ID chief. It is during
the time of MGen. Rabonza where the 8ID was conveyed with the Hall of Fame
Award for consistently garnering 2nd Place for three consecutive years
(2002-2004) in the National Literacy Awards, aside from the fact that it is
the only AFP unit to have qualified for the said award. This, plus the
numerous reforms and projects undertaken in the Division Headquarters in
Camp Lukban, paved the way for the unprecendented climate of trust, loyalty
and professionalism of the men and women of the 8ID.
MGen. Rabonza is due to
compulsorily retire on January 12, 2005, his 56th birthday. He is currently
assigned under the Office of the Secretary of National Defense where he is
entrusted with the management and supervision of the donated funds form
local and foreign sources for the benefit of the recent natural disaster in
(see related article)
Illegally cut lumbers
By VICKY A. BOHOL
December 29, 2004
SAN JORGE, Samar - True to his commitment to
eradicate illegal activities in his municipality and in implementing PD 705,
Sec. 78 as amended by EO 277 and RA 7161, San Jorge Mayor Joseph V. Grey led
the apprehension of illegally cut forest products consisting of about 832
board-feet of hardwood lumber along the river in Brgy. Guindapunan, San
Jorge, Samar at 12mn of December 26, 2004 Sunday.
The apprehending team confiscated seven (7) pcs. 1x12x16 and 45
pcs. 2x6x16 chainsawn lumber, together with the two (2) pumpboats used in
the shipment. These items are now in the custody of the San Jorge PNP
Station pending investigation and the filing of appropriate charges by the
The reported offenders were Alfredo Suarez, an alleged
businessman, Lito ‘Lulu’ Rosales, the alleged supplier, together with Jun
Cabrido, Boy Habulan, JunJun Dacles, Renato Machate, Edmon Arbo and Danilo
Machate, all from Brgy. Moboob, this municipality.
In one of the interviews, a source claimed, on condition of
anonymity, that a certain politician allegedly requested from the chief
executive the release of the pumpboats to its owners who were their
supporters in the last elections in view of its possible effect (to them) in
the next elections but said request was allegedly denied by the feisty mayor
who stood firm to implement the law saying it was violated and the offenders
have to be dealt with accordingly. He further emphasized that this
apprehension should serve as a warning to all those who are either engaging
or are yet planning to engage in any illegal activity that no one shall be
spared in his municipality in the implementation of the law.
The joint operative is composed of the following: the Mayor’s
Vice Squad in the persons of Pepito Botero, Allan Nueva, Danilo Rollo, Romy
Diaz, Perlito Salandino and Wilmar Sale; the San Jorge Forest Ranger Mateo
R. Bentillo, and the San Jorge PNP led by its newly-assigned chief, P/Insp.
Rolando B. Baula.