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Body found in creek not De Guzman’s

By AARON RECUENCO • JEFFREY DAMICOG

But PAO disputes PNP findings.

The body of a boy found in a creek in Gapan, Nueva Ecija does not belong to 14-year-old Reynaldo de Guzman, according to the Philippine National Police (PNP) which conducted a DNA test.

“Based on the results obtained the source of the DNA profile obtained from the male cadaver cannot be the biological offspring of Eduardo Gabriel and Nina Sta Ana,” said Deputy Director General Fernando Mendez Jr., deputy chief for operations of the PNP.

“He is not Reynaldo de Guzman based on the DNA examinations conducted,” he added.

Senior Supt. Ligaya Sim, officer-in-charge of the PNP Crime Laboratory, said they obtained the swab samples from the mouth of Gabriel and De Guzman and compared them to the same sample taken from the cadaver.

The result turned out to be negative.

“The accuracy of the test is what is really the standard of the scientific investigation. And if you are asking for numbers, that is 99.9 percent accurate,” said Sim.

The PNP findings, however, were disputed by Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) Chief Persida Acosta.

“Ang mga magulang ni Kulot (De Guzman’s nickname) ang mismo nag-identify sa cadaver,” Acosta said during a press conference yesterday.

“May nakita sila na palatandaan o balat,” she pointed out.

Acosta suggested the DNA test could be flawed.

“Ang DNA reliable yan kapag ang specimen ay safe specimen,” Acosta said. “Kapag contaminated, hindi po tumatama ang findings,”

When news about a body of a boy found in Nueva Ecija circulated in the social media last week, one of the neighbors showed the photo to the parents of De Guzman.

The parents then went to Gapan and positively identified the cadaver as that of their son, Reynaldo who had been missing since August 18.

Although there were some markings being cited by the parents such as a big wart on one of the knees, Mendez said there are some factors that might have forced the parents to believe that the cadaver was that of their son.

“Since it was probably bloated, probably the physical description already changed so that why they thought it was the body of Reynaldo de Guzman. But the DNA test conducted tell us that it’s not De Guzman,” said Mendez.

The story of De Guzman caught public attention as he was the companion of Carl Angelo Arnaiz who was killed by Caloocan City policemen after allegedly robbing a taxi driver.

The DNA finding means that De Guzman remains missing, according to Mendez.

“We will continue looking for Reynaldo de Guzman,” said Mendez.

Asked why they conducted the DNA test despite the fact that the parents have identified the body, Mendez said it is now their standard operating procedure to conduct DNA test since the PNP has the capability to do so.

Mendez said that they will be conducting investigation to determine the real identity of the body.

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