2 PCG men ordered arrested over Balintang Channel shooting
MANILA, Philippines—The Cagayan Municipal Trial Court on Wednesday ordered the arrest of two members of the Philippine Coast Guard involved in the shooting incident in the Balintang Channel.
Ordered arrested by the Municipal Trial Court of Sta. Ana Cagayan Branch 11 are Commanding Officer Arnold Enriquez dela Cruz and Seaman 1st Class Mhelvin Aguilar Bendo II for the obstruction of justice case.
The two were charged with the preparation and submission of a falsified Monthly Gunner Report on the incident.
In the complaint filed by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), which was affirmed by the DOJ, Dela Cruz and Bendo submitted two monthly gunnery reports with different results.
The first report indicated that 36 rounds of ammunition were fired by the PCG men; the second report indicated the “accurate” data: 108 rounds.
“We find that there is probable cause to charge respondents Bendo and Dela Cruz for obstruction of justice as the signatories to the (2) versions of the monthly gunnery report which were submitted during the investigation of the incident,” the DOJ said in a resolution dated Dec. 20, 2013.
The DOJ said an accurate and honest report was vital because “the number of bullets or shells [fired during the incident] is crucially material to the outcome of any investigation.”
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