Today's Punto
Today's Punto
Police witness in Jee kidnap-murder case recants statement
By Ding Cervantes

Oct 12, 2017

ANGELES CITY -- A police witness in the kidnaphomicide case of Korean businessman Jee Ick Joo here has recanted his earlier sworn statement explicitly exonerating Supt. Rafael Dumlao from involvement in the case now pending before the court in this city.

In a sworn statement dated last Oct. 3, PO2 Christopher Baldovino said he was pressured by Dumlao to execute an affi davit quoting SPO3 Ricky Sta. Isabel, another respondent in the case, as explicitly declaring that Dumlao did not know anything about the case.

Sta. Isabel has insisted Dumlao was the author of the operations against the Korean businessman.

Jee Ick Joo was abducted from his home in Friendship Plaza subdivision here on Oct. 18 last year. A P5-million ransom was later paid by his wife, but it turned out that the victim was already killed by his abductors and his remains were already cremated by a funeral facility in Caloocan City.

The respondents in the case now pending at the Regional Trial Court, Branch 58 here include Dumlao, who was then head of the PNP Anti-lllegal Drugs Group (AIDG) in Camp Crame, and Sta. Isabel, among others.

In his sworn statement done with the assistance of senior stateprosecutor Olivia Lazaro Torrevillas, Baldovino, who was with the Technical Support Unit of the AIDG at the time of the crime, said Dumlao pressured him to sign last March 17 an affidavit against his will and without any legal counsel in Camp Crame.

In his March 17 affidavit, Baldovino quoted Sta. Isabel as explicitly naming Dumlao as being unaware of the operation against Jee. He quoted Sta. Isabel as having merely said: “Hindi. Saka na, madali na pag nakuha na yan (No. Later on, and this would be easy when the subject has been taken).”

In his new sworn statement dated last Oct.3, however, Baldovino said Sta. Isabel never explicitly exonerated Dumlao. He noted, however, that Sta. Isabel merely admitted that the operation against Jee was not known by other “officers,” without reference to any officer, in response to his query.

Baldovino said he and his companion SPO4 Roy Villegas were taken by Sta. Isabel on board the latter’s black pick-up truck to implement a search warrant in Angeles City on Oct. 4 last year.

He said Jee’s Ford Explorer van was not in the victim’s garage at Friendship Plaza subdivision, so they proceeded to another area where they met one Jerry Omlang, also a respondent in the case, whom Sta. Isabel allegedly assigned to defl ate the tire of Jee’s vehicle.

He said Omlang was on board an Exalta car with four other men whom he did not know. Baldovino said they were able to locate Jee and his van at a Shell gas station to deflate his car’s tires.

Baldovino said that twice, Sta. Isabel told him to be the one to forcibly take Jee, but that he refused. The first time, he pretended to have a stomach ache and the second time, he cited the presence of CCTV cameras in the area.

He said that Sta. Isabel then called up Omlang and instructed him to hit Jee’s vehicle which was already on his way home, but that Omlang failed to do this.

Baldovino said it was at this point that he heard a call of Dumlao to Sta Isabel, whose phone was on loudspeaker mode, asking that they proceed to Caloocan where a certain Omeng who was suspected to be a dealer of party drugs, was reportedly seen.

Baldovino said he was no longer involved in succeeding operations on Oct. 18 when Jee was actually abducted from his home.

He said last March, he was surprised to get a call from Dumlao who asked him to executive an affidavit quoting Sta. Isabel as explicitly naming him, Dumlao, as being unaware of the operations against Jee.

Baldovino is slated to be presented by prosecution as witness with his new sworn testimony in the next hearing on Jee’s case later this month, after he failed to show up during the last hearing at the RTC here.

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