Posted by: JWP | 12/18/2009

Ampatuans no-show in Davao court hearing

By Edith Regalado (The Philippine Star) Updated December 17, 2009 12:00 AM

DAVAO CITY , Philippines — Former Maguindanao governor Andal Ampatuan Sr. and four other members of his family who were accused in the Nov. 23 massacre of 57 people in the province failed to appear before the hearing on their petition for the writ of habeas corpus at the Davao City Regional Trial Court yesterday.

Officials said the Ampatuans have been prevented by the military and police to appear before the court citing security reasons.

“It would be a security nightmare to bring all five Ampatuans to the court here in Davao City,” Task Force Davao chief Col. Oscar Lactao said.

The military’s Eastern Mindanao Command spokesman Maj. Randolph Cabangbang also said they have requested the court to defer the hearing for security reasons.

Cabangbang said the court granted their request, leaving the prosecutors and defense lawyers to settle the issue without requiring the Ampatuans to appear.

Davao RTC judge George Omelio earlier ordered the police and military to present the Ampatuans for the hearing on their petition.

The Ampatuan patriarch led his sons, Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) Gov. Zaldy Ampatuan, Shariff Aguak Mayor Anwar Ampatuan, Maguindanao Gov. Sajid Ampatuan and accused mass murderer Datu Unsay Mayor Andal Ampatuan Jr. in filing the petition praying for the issuance of the writ of habeas corpus in questioning the legality of their arrest and detention.

read more….

11/26/09 part1

11/26/09 part2

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