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New evidence in Aquino Mamasapano case, says VACC to Ombudsman

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by Allan Yves Briones

In a motion before the Office of the Ombudsman Friday, the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) spoke of “new evidence” which could tie down the former president to numerous criminal charges if reopened.

According to VACC representative Ferdinand Topacio, their 44 counts of reckless impudence resulting in homicide against Benigno Aquino III are strengthened by an affidavit from Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong.

Magalong previously served as the chief of the Criminal and Investigation Detection Group (CIDG) who conducted an investigation on the Mamasapano operation – one that took the lives of 44 policemen. He was recently in the news for his allegations regarding the scandal involving resigned Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Oscar Albayalde.

The former CIDG topman, in speaking to the press, referenced his earlier report on the investigation.

Also included in the complaint is another former PNP chief, Alan Purisima, as well as former Special Action Forces chief Getulio Napeñas for their alleged participation in the botched operation.

In 2015, an operation to subdue terrorist Zulkifli Abdhir alias Marwan turned into a bloodbath, leaving 44 policemen and several terrorists, even civilians, dead.

Since the term of former ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales up to Samuel Martires, the office has filed and withdrawn graft and usurpation charges against Aquino.

Just last September 3, the Supreme Court ruled that there is no probable cause to charge the accused with reckless impudence.

Topacio, however, believes this time would be different.

“That decision is only applicable with respect to the exercise of the discretion by the former Ombudsman,” he said. “This is a new investigation, it will reopen the case for the examination, (which means) we will start from the beginning.”

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