Parents of Aegis Juris fratmen appeal for NBI detention

MANILA, Philippines – The parents of the 10 Aegis Juris fraternity members charged of hazing in the death of freshman law student Horacio “Atio” Castillo III appealed to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to keep custody of their sons and not turn them over to the Manila police.

“The Manila Police District (MPD) is one of the complainants in the above entitled case and thus, MPD is not and cannot be an objective and independent custodian of our children, thereby posing imminent danger to the lives of our children,” the parents said in a letter to NBI Director Dante Gierran on Monday, March 26.

The 10 fratmen surrendered together to the NBI on Friday, March 23, and are awaiting a commitment order from the Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) Branch 40 which ordered their arrests.

The fratmen are set to file on Monday a motion before the Manila RTC Branch 40 to keep the boys under NBI custody.

Why not MPD? 

According to the parents of Ralph Trangia, the MPD “forcibly entered their house” in the evening of Thursday, March 22, “for the alleged purpose of apprehending the accused Trangia.”

Branch 40 Judge Alfredo Ampuan had just issued the resolution ordering their arrest Thursday afternoon but according to the Trangias, the MPD did not have a warrant of arrest that night, or even a search warrant.

“The operatives of the MPD even went to the second floor of the house of the accused Trangia,” said the letter.

The Trangias said they intend to file “appropriate criminal and administrative complaints against the operatives of the MPD and their responsible higher officer for unlawfully entering and searching their house without appropriate search warrant.”

“From the foregoing, it is quite clear that our children will not be safe under the custody of MPD. We wish that you will not place the safety and lives of our children under imminent danger by allowing the transfer of their custody to MPD,” said the parents.

The camp of Jose Miguel Salamat and Robin Ramos also have a separate motion for Judge Ampuan to inhibit, saying he is the brother-in-law of Dante Jimenez of the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC), who visibly assisted the Castillos during the preliminary investigation. –

Lian Buan

Lian Buan covers justice and corruption for Rappler. She is interested in decisions, pleadings, audits, contracts, and other documents that establish a trail. If you have leads, email or tweet @lianbuan.