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Lim’s 2 co-accused in drug case already dead

By JEFFREY DAMICOG

Two of the co-respondents of alleged drug lord Peter Lim in a drug complaint were found to have been killed.

The Department of Justice (DoJ) has received the returns of the subpoenas it issued and found that Max Miro and Nelson Pepito didn’t receive the subpoenas since they were already dead.

One of the returned subpoena indicated that Pepito was killed by two unidentified motorcycle-riding gunmen in Barangay Seguinon in Albuera, Leyte on Dec. 1.

Miro had been killed when police tried to arrest him during an operation at his home in Barangay Bantigue in Ormoc City, Leyte on March 10. He is facing a murder case for killing a policeman.

The DoJ sent the subpoenas to the respondents of the case to have them appear on April 12 at the start of its preliminary investigation of the drug complaint.

The preliminary investigation will be conducted by a new panel of prosecutors formed by Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II and they are Senior Assistant State Prosecutor Juan Pedro Navera, Assistant State Prosecutor Anna Norren Devanadera, and Prosecution Attorney Herbert Calvin Abugan.

Aguirre made the move after being criticized when a previous panel of prosecutors issued the Dec. 20, 2017 resolution which dismissed the drug complaint filed by the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group’s Major Crimes Investigation Unit (PNP-CIDG-MCIU).

In his order dated March 19, Aguirre said “the Resolution dated December 20, 2017 dismissing this instant case be vacated and the above-mentioned case be remanded to a new panel of prosecutors for purposes of conducting the continuation of the preliminary investigation/clarificatory hearing and to allow the complainant and respondents to submit additional pieces of evidence in support of their respective positions.”

Under the complaint, Lim and his co-respondents are accused of violating Section 26(b) in relation to Section 5 (Sale, Trading, Administration, Dispensation, Delivery, Distribution and Transportation of Dangerous Drugs and/or Controlled Precursors and Essential Chemicals) of Republic Act 9165, also known as the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

Aside from Lim, Miro and Pepito, those who have been named as respondents in the complaint are self-confessed drug lord Rolan “Kerwin” Espinosa, convicted drug lord Peter Co, alleged drug supplier Lovely Impal, arrested alleged drug dealer Marcelo Adorco, Ruel Malindangan, and several others who are only known through the aliases Amang, Ricky, Warren, Tupie, Jojo, Jaime, Yawa, Lapi, Royroy, Marlon, and Bay.

The PNP based its complaint on the sworn statements issued by Adorco who was arrested on July 8, 2016 during a drug buy-bust operation in Albuera, Leyte. Adorco has worked for Espinosa.

However, the panel of prosecutors which dismissed the case ruled that “his testimonies are rife with inconsistencies and contradictions, and run against the standards of human experience and the logical course of reality.”

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