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Walang hocus pocus! Ex-CBCP chief admits meeting Bikoy but insists they just prayed

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Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas has admitted meeting once with Peter Joemel Advincula alias Bikoy but never discussed plans to overthrow President Rodrigo Duterte.

“I admit, however, that I met Mr. Advincula only once, on 24 April 2019, at around 8:30 a.m. after I had breakfast at the Jesuit Residence in Ateneo,” said the former president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) in his counter-affidavit.

Villegas recounted he had just had breakfest when “Mr. Advincula approached me, introduced himself and asked if he could talk to me.”

“After he narrated the hardships of his life to me, I was so moved that I gave him my personal rosary blessed by Pope Francis, prayed for him, and blessed him. Soon after, I left for Dagupan City and never saw, spoke, or in any way communicated with Mr. Advincula again. This meeting lasted only for about thirty minutes, and at no point did we discuss any plan to overthrow President Rodrigo Duterte, much less label him or any person close to him,” Villegas stated.

The prelate denied allegations made in Advincula’s sworn statement that Advincula met with Villegas, Fr. Albert Alejo, and a certain Jonell at around 6p.m. on Dec. 12, 2018 at the Jesuit residence at the Ateneo de Manila University to discuss the release of the videos to the public.

To prove this, Villegas submitted a sworn statement of Fr. Jersey Prepose and a video recording which showed that at that time he was at the Parish Church of Our Lady of the Rosary in Orani, Bataan holding a mass.

Villegas filed the counter-affidavit before the Department of Justice (DOJ) in response to the criminal complaint filed by the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG).

In its complaint, the PNP-CIDG accused Villegas and his co-respondents of sedition, inciting to sedition, cyber libel, libel, estafa, harboring a criminal, and obstruction of justice.

The case is in in connection with the “Ang Totoong Narcolist” videos which has defamed Duterte family members as being involved the narcotics trade.

Advincula, who revealed himself to be the hooded Bikoy in the videos, claimed that members of the opposition were behind the videos meant to discredit and destabilize the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte.

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