Key witness in transgender slay now in witness protection program
MANILA, Philippines—The primary witness in the brutal killing of Filipino transgender Jeffrey “Jennifer” laude has been admitted to the Witness Protection Program (WPP) of the Department of Justice (DOJ).
Lawyer Harry Roque, the legal counsel of Laude’s family, posted in his Twitter account that “Barbie” was admitted to the WPP on Saturday afternoon.
Laude’s friend “Barbie” was the one who identified Private First Class Joseph Pemberton after the US Naval Criminal Investigation Service presented pictures of US Marines.
Laude and her friend Barbie was at a bar in Olongapo City when Pemberton and three other American soldiers approached them.
Laude and Pemberton checked in at the Celzone Lodge but the US Marine left the motel a few minutes after they checked in.
Laude was later found lifeless by a room attendant on the bathroom floor of the motel after checking in allegedly with Pemberton. The victim’s head was slumped in the toilet.
On Wednesday, murder charges were filed against Pemberton who was seen leaving the bar with the 26-year-old transgender woman on the night of the killing.
The subpoena and complaint against the US Marine suspected of killing Laude was served to the US Embassy on Friday.
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