Five Cadiz City residents were sentenced yesterday to reclusion perpetua, or 40 years imprisonment, for the murder of a 19-year-old man whom they stabbed and beat to death.
Cadiz City Regional Trial Court Executive Judge, Renato Muñez, found Renante Hinojales Dawa Sr., alias Negro, Chris Orlando Magalona, alias Panok, Nestor Catalan Garcia Jr., alias Tonton, Joemar Catalan Sayam, alias Dumdum, and Allan Sayam Ribo, alias Tata, who are all detained, guilty beyond reasonable doubt of murder, private prosecutor Roem Arbolado said.
The judge ordered the five to jointly pay the heirs of their victim, Michael Adelantar, P75,000 as indemnity for his death, P75,000 in moral damages, P50,000 in exemplary damages and P277,000 in funeral expenses without subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency.
Witnesses told the court that Adelantar and his friends were in Barangay Tiglawigan at 2 a.m. of Oct. 31, 2005 to watch a band and to dance.
Dawa, who was described to be a burly person with curly hair, and was wearing only shorts and was drunk, grabbed the buttocks of one of Adelantar’s female companions, the court was told.
Adelantar told Dawa not to scandalize his companion, and soon, after he and his group decided to leave.
However, as Adelantar was standing in a waiting shed, the accused, who were positively identified by witnesses, ganged up on him, causing his death, the court was told.
The accused, by their superior strength and numbers, and with the use of brass knuckles, a knife, stone and stingray spike inflicted injuries on vital parts of the body of the unarmed victim that clearly qualifies the crime committed to be murder, the judge said.
The judge said the five accused who have been detained at the Cadiz City Bureau of Jail Management and Penology are entitled to full credit of their preventive imprisonment and are further ordered to be immediately committed to the National Penitentiary for the service of their sentence.
Insofar as the other accused, alias Junjun Catalan and alias Boboy Sayam, who are still at large, the case is ordered archived to be immediately revived upon their arrest, the judge said.
The Warrant and Subpoena Officer of the Cadiz police is directed to explain in writing in 10 days from receipt of the decision why they have not been arrested despite the issuance of the warrant for their arrest on Jan. 16, 2006, the judge added.*CPG
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