NATIONAL Capital Region Police Office director, Major General Debold M. Sinas yesterday said he has ordered a stepped-up hunt for a suspected Muntinlupa City policeman and his lover accused of killing a Cameroonian national in Pasay City last October 26.
The Metro Manila police director identified the suspect as Corporal Leonel Layson, previously assigned at the Muntinlupa City Police Sub-Station 6. Also being hunted is Layson’s girlfriend Kathrina Fernandez, a resident of no. 14 Boston Street in Barangay Kaunlaran, Quezon City.
Sinas said investigators from the Pasay and Muntinlupa police stations cracked the identity of the gunman who killed Divine Njua Komfun alias ‘James’ in front of a conveniene store along Arnaiz Avenue corner Roxas Boulevard service road around 11:28 p.m. last October 26 with the help of witnesses and CCTV footages in the area.
He said that Layson, suspended from November 1 to 5 this year due to neglect of duty, did not surrender to his superior despite efforts to contact him.
“There is already a Metro Manila-wide manhunt against the two suspects being conducted by my men in coordination with other Philippine National Police units. We are asking assistance from the public to immediately report to the authorities any information on the whereabouts of Cpl. Layson and his cohort. Your cooperation with the police will greatly help in giving justice to the victim,” said Sinas.
The NCRPO chief lauded Southern Police District director, Brigadier Gen. Emmanuel B. Peralta and his men from the Pasay City Police Station led by Colonel Ericson Dilag for their diligence in conducting the follow-up investigation which led to the identification of the suspects.
He said that they discovered that at around 8 p.m. last October 26, the West African national was dropped off at the convenience store by two persons, one of them said to be his Filipina girlfriend and their fellow friend.
The victim then unloaded his luggage and boarded a vehicle being driven by a fellow Cameroonian identified as Yves Marcel Oum alias ‘Steve.’ Shortly after, the victim and Oum went to a nearby inn and checked-in.
Around 11 p.m. of the same day, the inn’s CCTV recording showed that the victim and the unidentified Filipina arrived in the area on board a gray Mitsubishi Mirage with conduction sticker B7L835 and went to his room.
Twenty minutes later, Komfun left the inn by foot and walked along the pavement heading towards Roxas Boulevard where the gunman who was sitting on a bench tailed him.
Without any provocation, the suspect shot the African national at the nape killing him on the spot. The assassin then ran away and rode his vehicle parked near the restaurant.
The CCTV footage showed the suspect making a u-turn before escaping.
Sinas said forensic investigators recovered a spent caliber .45 casing at the scene. Also found inside the victim’s room were his luggage containing several sheets of paper-size bill and a bottle of unknown chemical.
A forensic examination of the CCTV footages conducted by the PNP Anti-Cybercrime Group led to the identification of the gunman’s motor vehicle with conduction sticker K1H256.
Sinas said that during questioning, the registered owner of the vehicle told investigators that Fernandez rented the car for P30,000 last October 4. Fernandez also provided photocopies of her identification cards and gave her cell phone number to the real owner of the vehicle.
The NCRPO director said the phone number given by Fernandez to the owner of the car also appeared in the victim’s call logs.
He added that they likewise learned that Fernandez also rented a gray Mitsubishi Mirage from another person in Alabang, Muntinlupa City last October 1 for P30,000. The owner of the vehicle told NCRPO investigators that during their meeting, she saw a man with a firearm tucked in his waistline as the man who drove away the vehicle which was rented from him by Fernandez.
The woman positively identified the man who drove her vehicle as the same person shown in the CCTV footages at the scene of the murder. Sinas said that they found out that Fernandez also used to frequent the Alabang police sub-station and the Muntinlupa City Police Station.
“Our investigators were able to confirm that Cpl. Layson and Fernandez are lovers,” he said.
Investigators are still determining the real motive behind the killing of the African national who yielded what seemed to be instruments ordinarily being used by West African con men involved in the so-called ‘black dollar’ scam.
Police have arrested a number of Cameroonian nationals accused of defrauding many Filipinos of millions of pesos in the past by making it appear that they can ‘clean’ bundles of supposedly dyed U.S. dollar bills worth hundreds of millions. The victims were duped into purchasing chemicals that will be used to ‘process’ the dollar bills and remove the dye to make them legal tender.
ANOTHER COP ACCUSED OF KILLING VALENZUELA CITY MESSENGER
Another policeman is facing criminal and administrative charges after he was identified as one of two men who robbed and shot dead a company messenger in Valenzuela City last month.
The suspect is now under the custody of a PNP unit in Camp Crame. Earlier, police identified the suspects being hunted in connection with the killing of Niño Luegi Hernando in Paso de Blas, Valenzuela City as Rico ‘Moja’ Reyes and Narciso ‘Tukmol’ Santiago.
The suspects were seen in a CCTV footage as tailing the victim before one of them shot him in the head. Shortly after the victim slumped on the ground, the other suspect grabbed the messenger’s bag containing the money he withdrew from a local bank while his cohort took over the victim’s motorcycle and escaped.
The Valenzuela City local government offered a P300,000 reward for any information that would lead to the identification and arrest of the killers.