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CHONG PRESSES FOR NBI PROBE ON AIDE’S SLAY



MANILA -- Former Biliran Rep. Glenn Chong met with officials of the Department of Justice (DOJ) on Thursday to seek assistance in the investigation into the death, under suspicious circumstances, of his aide Richard Santillan last month.

Chong met with DOJ officials led by Undersecretary Adrian Sugay to request that the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) take over the investigation.

In his request to the DOJ, Chong, in particular, asked that the NBI take custody of his Toyota Fortuner SUV (NOF 845) impounded by the Philippine National Police (PNP).

The PNP claims Santillan shot it out with policemen, prompting law enforcement authorities to use overwhelming force.

Chong and Presidential Anti-Corruption Commissioner Greco Belgica accompanied Santillan's widow Jenette to the DOJ in seeking assistance.

Aside from the car, Chong said they also want the NBI to take custody of the clothes worn by Santillan during the incident, as well as conduct "a reconstruction of the events" from the time Santillan was last seen alive.

He added that a crucial piece of evidence, particularly footage from the dash camera installed on his SUV, could also shed light to the event.

"This is not a case of extrajudicial killing but a clear case of murder by guns for hire," Chong told reporters after his meeting at the DOJ as he reiterated his call for the PNP leadership to surrender those guilty for the assault.

Belgica, for his part, underscored that no less than President Rodrigo Duterte has called for a thorough investigation into the incident.

Chong, an outspoken critic of government election services contractor, Smartmatic of Venezuela, reiterated that he could have been the real target of Santillan’s assailants.

The victim was found sprawled in Chong's Toyota Fortuner (NOF-845). A police report showed that Santillan allegedly shot it out with a group of policemen manning a checkpoint on Eastbank Road, Cambridge Village past 1 a.m. on Dec. 10, 2018.

Chong insists his expose on election irregularities in the use of Smartmatic’s Precinct Count Optical Scan machines was the motive for the attack.

Two police officers from the Rizal Provincial Police Office were relieved from post on December 12 in connection with the incident.

Relieved were Rizal Provincial Police Director Senior Supt. Lou Evangelista and Cainta police chief, Supt. Pablito Naganag. (PNA)

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