REPUBLIC OF THE PHILIPPINES
REGIONAL TRIAL COURT
7th J
udicial Region
BRANCH 7
Cebu City

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES,
                                           Plaintiff,

                 - versus -                                                                                                      CRIM. CASES NOS. CBU-45303
                                                                                                                                                                    and CBU-45304

FRANCISCO JUAN LARRANAGA @ "PACO";                                                             FOR: KIDNAPPING AND SERIOUS
JOSMAN AZNAR, ROWEN ADLAWAN @ WESLEY;                                                                      ILLEGAL DETENTION
ALBERTO CANO @ "PAHAK"; ARIEL
BALANSAG; DAVIDSON VALIENTE RUSIA @
"DAVID FLORIDO" @ "TISOY TAGALOG"; 
JAMES ANTHONY UY @ "WANGWANG" Uy
and JAMS ANDREW Uy @ "MM" Uy,
                                           Accused.
x - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -/
                                                                                T R A N S C R I P T

                                                                                           of    the

                                                                 Stenographic notes taken before HON. 
                                                                 MARTIN A. OCAMPO, Presiding Judge of
                                                                 Branch 7, Regional Trial Court, Cebu 
                                                                 City, during the hearing on September 14,
                                                                 1998
at 2:20 o'clock in the afternoon.
                                                                 

Present:
                                                                 HON. MARTIN A. OCAMPO
                                                                 Presiding Judge

ASSISTED BY:
                                                                  Mrs. Alicia L. Formentera
                                                                  Stenographer

                                                                   Mrs. Lucila C. Bajarias
                                                                   Court Interpreter

APPEARANCES:
                                                                   Prosecutor Primo C. Miro
                                                                   Prosecutor Cesar Estrera
                                                                   Prosecutor Teresita Galanida
                                                                   Prosecutor Ramon Jose Duyongco
                                                                   Prosecutor Leonardo Carreon
                                                                  For the State                                                 

                                                                   Atty. Honorato Hermosisima
                                                                   Atty. Bienvenido Saniel
                                                                   Atty. Veronico Sardoncillo
                                                                   Private Prosecutors

PAGE 2
                                                                   Atty. Ferdinand Saornido
                                                                   Counsel for Rusia
                                                                   Atty. Venustiano Ypil
                                                                   Atty. Anacleto Debalocus 
                                                                   
Atty. John de Jesus
                                                                   PAO Lawyers-Counsel de oficio
                                                                   for the rest of the accused

                                                                   
PROS. MIRO:          
          For the state, Your Honor.

ATTY. HERMOSISIMA:
          Respectfully appearing as private prosecutor in collaboration with Attys. Saniel and Sardoncillo and the prosecuting Fiscals, you Honor. 

ATTY. DEBALOCUS:
          Respectfully appearing a. counsel de oficio for the rest of they accused, Your honor, in collaboration with Atty. de Jesus and Atty. Ypil.

ATTY. SAORNIDO:
          Respectfully appearing as counsel for accused Rusia, your Honor. 

COURT:
          I noticed that the accused have not yet appointed counsels of their choice. They promised to do so before the 24th. Now, what the Court would like to know is - supposed they do not appoint counsels of their choice by the 24th, what will the Court do? Will the prosecution submit a Motion advising the Court what to do in that event? E, papano kung walang abogado yong mga akusado (So, what if the accused don't have lawyers) on the 24th, who is going to conduct the cross-examination? I think - as of now I would ask the accused if they are consenting to the PAO lawyers conducting the cross-examination of the prosecution witnesses including Russia. If they consent, then we will order the PAO lawyers to conduct the cross-examination. If they do not consent, then, what's the use of ordering the PAO lawyers to conduct cross-examination di waste of time lang you. (Then that would be waste of time.) The accused do not honor it anyway. And then the next step would be to ask then, if they do not have lawyers by next week yet and to ask them, are they consenting to the PAO lawyers presenting their defense evidence, di ba? (Isn't it?) If they consent, then we will order the PAO lawyers to present their evidence. But if the accused say they are not consenting, then what's the use of ordering the PAO lawyers to present evidence. How can they present an evidence without the cooperation of the accused? Di, magmumukha tayong luko-luko (Then, we will look crazy) if we will order the PAO lawyers - sige (ok) you present your evi-

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster). 

PAGE 3
dence. Anong evidence and i-present namin e ayaw ng mga accused na mag-present ng evidence. (What evidence will we present, since, the accused does not want to present evidence.) So, in those two events, we will have to consider the accused to have waived cross-examination and presentation of evidence if that happens. Kung ayaw nila, anong magagawa natin? (If they do not want, what can we do?) They do not want to cross-examine. They do not want to appoint lawyers. They do not want to present evidence. Then, the Court will order the prosecution to formally submit its evidence and then ask the PAO lawyers to comment and then consider the case as submitted for decision as of next week. E, papano, kung ayaw nilang mag-hire ng lawyers, (So, how, if they do not want to hire their own lawyers,) what can we do? What can any court do? If the accused refused to name lawyers and to cross-examine the prosecution witnesses and to present evidence, e, ano ba ang magagawa ng husgado? (So, what can the court do?) They insist on my inhibiting myself. The law says, Rule 137 says, if the judge decides not to inhibit himself, then the trial must continue and there shall be no appeal or stay from or by reason of the judge's refusal to inhibit himself until final judgment. That's the provision of the law. So, they cannot appeal my denial of their Motion to Inhibit until final judgment and there can be no restraining order of this proceedings by reason of that denial of their Motion to Inhibit. Yon ang sabi ni Justice Benipayo, (That's what Justice Benipayo said,) the Court Administrator, once the trial begins, tuloy-tuloy na. (it has to be continously already.)  There can be no stopping it within  60 days, ha? (So?) Otherwise, ako naman ang mapapa­sama. (I will be the one in trouble.)

ATTY. DE JESUS:
         
Your Honor, please . . . 

COURT:
          Yes, paņero. (my fellow lawyer.)

ATTY. DE JESUS:
          Just to manifest, Your Honor. We are made to understand, Your Honor, that the prosecution are still to present witnesses. May we inquire from the prosecution whether these witnesses are - the testimonies of these witnesses are still in support of the pending motion of accused Rusia for him to be discharged and to be utilized as state witness because - may we know from the prosecution, Your Honor?

COURT:
         
Now, the Motion to Discharge may be made at any time before the prosecution rests its case. It is up for the Court to decide and of course - but the requirements of the rule must be followed. What are the requirements of Rule 119, Section 9? They have to be followed including yong - ano ba yon? (that - what was that?) What was that - the case yong (that is) involving moral turpitude? All those requirements have to be considered by the Court before

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster). 

PAGE 4
it discharges the accused Rusia. But the point is, we accepted his testimony already as an accused, not yet as state witness because
any accused can make a judicial confession if he wants to. There is no law against an accused wanting to make a judicial confession before the court. Bakit bawal ba yon (Why is it prohibited) for an accused to make a judicial confession? Any of those accused who wants to make a judicial confession, I will accept it. Let them make a judicial confession. Bakit hindi naman bawal yon. (Why, that is not prohibited.) There is nothing illegal in that. Accused Rusia, decided he wanted to make a judicial confession because his conscience was bothering him. What can we do? Babawalan ba na huwag kang mag-confess dito - bawal. (Will we prohibit anyone to confess here.) Paano, ano tayo rito? (How, what are we here?) We are supposed to listen to evidence. We are not supposed to prohibit anybody from confessing if he wants to.

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          May we . . .

COURT: 
          Yes, Fiscal.

PROS. GALANIDA:
         
Your honor, please, on the side of the prosecution panel, we would like to inform the defense because they are asking us whether we are presenting these witnesses in a regular trial. That we are indeed presenting these witnesses in a regular trial and the 2 Motions that they have, Motion for Discharge, our Motion for Discharge and their Motion for Bail are just considered as incidents of this regular trial. After all, we already had manifested before that in their Motion for Bail, the prosecution will be given the chance and the opportunity to show that the guilt of the accused is really strong. And that is why, whatever evidence is presented in connection with the Motion for Bail is being reproduced in this regular trial so we are still presenting these witnesses in a regular trial and we still have other witnesses aside from the witnesses that we will be presenting soon. 

COURT: 
          So, let it be understood that synchronous or simultaneous with this trial is being heard also the Motion for Bail and the Motion for Discharge of the accused Rusia. 

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          Yes, Your Honor, please, Because we are - we received this copy . . . 

COURT: 
          Because the resolution of those 2 Motions to discharge and for bail, depends upon the evidence to be presented

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster). 

PAGE 5
still to be presented by the prosecution. Hindi pa tapos, e, (It is not yet finished,) until the prosecution manifests that they have already presented all the evidence they want to present to support the Motions against bail and for discharge. Pag sinabi nila yon, (If they say that,) that's the time I will resolve these 2 Motions. E, hindi pa naman. (So, they did not yet.)  They are still presenting their witnesses. So, do you have something to say, Paņero? (my fellow lawyer?)

ATTY. D. JESUS:
          Yes, Your Honor, please. We are basing our inquiry, Your Honor, on the Speedy Trial Implementing Rules, Circular No. 38-98 under Section 9, Exclusions, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          What is that, Speedy Trial Act?
 

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          Yes, Your honor, the implementing guidelines of this
Speedy Trial Act.

COURT: 
          I don't think I have that yet. I'm guided by the Heinous Crimes Act which is posted here. Administrative Order No. 104-96 which says that we are supposed to conduct mandatory continuous trial. According to Justice Benipayo, ibig sabihin na tuloy tuloy, walang stop-stop, walang suspension-suspension,
(that means continuous trial, no stopping, no suspensions) Benipayo himself told that before the IBP, Isa pa, sabi niya yong (One more thing, he said about ) dilatory motion, that depends upon the sound discretion of the judge, di ba? (Isn't it?) Kaya nga judge siya - (That's why he is judge -) he can give discretion to determine what is dilatory. It depends upon the circumstances. I don't hold anybody for contempt. That was the first time I held - anybody, a lawyer for contempt for filing a dilatory motion. Kahit saan kayo magpunta, (Wherever you go) when you were in the course of a trial, the defense counsels suddenly rise up, altogether, and say they are walking out of the court. They are boycotting the trial. We will not return until you inhibit yourself. E, kahit saan sa mundo kayo magpunta, (So, even you go anywhere in the world) that is contempt of Court, my friends. Anywhere in the world, kahit seguro sa Russia magpunta kayo or sa Vietnam, (even perhaps if you go to Rusia or Vietnam,) that is contempt of court. Biro mo, magtayuan lahat sa trial na ganyan tapos biglang magtatayuan - (Imagine, they all stood up during the trial like that -) we are walking out from this trial. We are boycotting, we will not return until you inhibit yourself. Abay, samantalang sinasabi ng batas, (But then, it states in the law) when the judge says he will not inhibit himself, kailangan tuloy yong trial. (the trial must continue.) He doesn't say na (already) stop. E, papano yon? (So, how is that?) Anywhere In the world you go that is contempt of court. That was the first time I held a lawyer in contempt, e, papano, (So, how is that?) that has to be done. Alright, continue,

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster). 

PAGE 6
PROS. MIRO:
          Your Honor, please, we would like to announce to this Honorable Court that we will be presenting 2 witnesses in today's session and their testimonies will be part of our evidence  in chief and as part of our support of our Motion for the discharge of Davidson Rusia and as our opposition to their Motion for Bail. So that, Your Honor, we will be calling upon Mr. Benjamin Colina as our seventh witness.

COURT: 
          By the way, I just want to give you a copy - do you have a copy of this Motion for Early Resolution filed by the accused in that Court of Appeals case? Wala kayo nito? (You don't have this?) 

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          No.

ATTY. HERMOSISIMA: 
          May I see, Your Honor, please? By the way, Your honor, for the record, we have already completed our opposition to the Motion for leave to File Amended petition which was filed by Atty. Armovit, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          But you have a copy of this. Ipa-xerox muna yan (Have that xerox first) because I received that last Friday.

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          Well, we don't have a copy of this yet, Your Honor. 

COURT: 
          Yon ang gawain ni Armovit. (That's Armovit's style) He doesn't give a copy to the prosecution.

ATTY. HERMOSISIMA: 
          This is an advance copy for you, Your Honor. 

COURT : 
         
For Armovit, the prosecution does not exist. Ako lang -  ako lang ang kaaway niya. (I am - I am the only one he is fighting.) I'm the only one he is furnishing a copy of this.
 

PROS. MIRO: 
          But we are also the proper parties. We should be furnished copies. 

COURT: 
          No, you are not parties according to Armovit. 

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster). 

PAGE 7
PROS. GALANIDA: 
          Only the Solicitor General and this Honorable Court have been furnished. So, may we have this xerox copied?

COURT:
          Yes. According to Armovit you are non-parties. No - according to the lawyers they are lawyers still here because they asked for certiorari. They withdrew on August 27. They have filed a formal motion to withdraw, filed by their clients. E
,di na sila abogado rito (So, they are no longer lawyers here) as of August 27. But on September 3, they filed a motion to inhibit me. What right do they have to file a motion to inhibit or petition to inhibit me? E, hindi na sila abogado dito (So, they are no longer lawyers here) as of August 27. They filed with the written constant of their clients to withdraw as of August 27. So, on September 3, hindi na sila abogado rito (they were no longer lawyers here) but they still filed a motion to inhibit me from hearing this case. Hindi na sila abogado ng mga accused. (They were no longer lawyers for the accused.) E, magtatawa ka na lang, ha? (So, you will just have to laugh it out.)

PROS. MIRO: 
          So, we could still understand they're fighting for their own cause of action. So how could they . . .

COURT: 
          I don't know what kind of lawyers they are.

ATTY. HERMOSISIMA: 
          That point, Your Honor, is extensively discussed in our opposition, That is just an advance copy, your Honor. We will be rushing up a copy to the Court of Appeals this afternoon via DHL and the rest will be sent by post
office.

COURT: 
          Eto namang (This) motion for intervention, accused doon sa (there in the)
Habeas Corpus case, they are asking the Court of Appeals to inhibit me. But inhibition is not an issue in that Habeas corpus. Habeas Corpus - the issue is only the legality of the detention of the lawyers.

PROS. MIRO: 
          That is another cause of action.

COURT: 
          Why are they asking the Court of Appeals to inhibit me? Hindi naman issue yon doon sa (That is not anyway an issue in the) habeas Corpus.

PROS. MIRO: 
          Maybe they are still thinking that they are still counsels for the accused when they have
already withdrawn as counsels. Why should they ask for the inhibition of the judge when ...

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster). 

PAGE 8
COURT: 
          You nga - sa (That's it, in the) Habeas Corpus they filed a motion
for intervention sa (in the) Habeas Corpus. But the issue in Habeas Corpus is the legality of their detention.

PROS. MIRO: 
          Yes.

COURT: 
         Hindi naman (It's not anyway) inhibition. It's not an issue.

PROS. MIRO: 
          That has nothing to do with inhibition.

COURT: 
          And why are they asking for inhibition? Ano pa ang gusto nila? (What else do they want?) 

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          Early resolution. 

ATTY. HERMOSISIMA: 
          Precisely, Your Honor. There is misjoinder of causes of action. A different cause of action.

COURT:
          And yet, the certiorari was
flied by Armovit on September 3. Yong motion nila (That motion of theirs) to intervene was filed on August 27. So, even before Armovit asked for ay inhibition, they asked for my inhibition in the Habeas Corpus case. Ako na lang magtatawa, a papano? (I will just be the one to laugh, so, how?) Sila (For them) it's - alright, they are not lawyers, di ba? (Isn't it?) Mapapagpasensiyahan mo na yon. (We will just give them all our patience.) E, dapat si (It should be) Armovit at saka yong lawyers - (and the other lawyers -)they filed a petition on September 3 when they were no  longer lawyers here. 

PROS. HERMOSISIMA: 
         
That's why, they don't have any personality.

COURT :
          They
asked for my inhibition. Anong estado nila - (What's their status -)  how could they asked for - can anybody, any of these participants ask for my inhibition. Kahit hindi na sila abogado dito (Even though they are no longer lawyers here) they will file a petition with the Court of Appeals.

PROS. MIRO: 
         
I think this Honorable Court should have ruled this inhibition and go on with the hearing.

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster). 

PAGE 9
COURT:
          S
inasabi na lang yan (They only say that) because they think it strikes my ano (what) my sense - my common sense. Common sense lang. (Only.) Alright, present your evidence. Next witness.

PROS. MIRO: 
          We
will. present our next witness, Your Honor. He will be presented by Prosecutor Ramon Duyongco
for his direct
testimony.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          May I state the purpose, Your Honor?

COURT: 
          Yes, please.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          The purpose, Your Honor, offers to prove by the testimony of this witness, Mr. Benjamin Colina, that he is a rent a car driver for about 10 years; that he is a member of the drivers association known as Park Place Uptown Drivers Association; that sometime in the evening of July 16, 1997 about 11:30 o'clock in the evening,
he was at the Park Place Hotel waiting for a passenger and about that time, accused Davidson Valiente Rusia and accused Rowen Adlawan alias Wesley, approached him and tried to rent his Nissan Vanette for 2 days at P2,500.00 a day provided that they will be the one to drive it but he refused; the testimony of this witness, Your Honor, is offered to substantially corroborate the testimony of eyewitness, accused Davidson Valiente Rusia to the effect that after the 2 sisters, Jacqueline and Marijoy were kidnapped by Rowen Adlawan and accused Josman Aznar along Archbishop Reyes, Cebu City, the car driven by Aznar where the 2 sisters were boarded and on  board the same car, in front seat was Davidson Valiente Rusia and accused Rowen Adlawan, they proceeded to Fuente Osmeņa, Cebu City, to try to rent a self-drive van; and he will testify to some relevant and material matters, preliminary matters in amplification of the above-mentioned purposes, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          /to Court Interpreter 
          Swear the witness.

COURT INTERPRETER TO WITNESS: 
          Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole
truth, and nothing but the truth, in this hearing?

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster). 

PAGE 10
WITNESS: 
          I do.

COURT INTERPRETER TO WITNESS:
          Please state your name, age, civil status, and other personal circumstances.

WITNESS:

        Benjamin Molina, 49 years old, married, Rent-a-car driver, and a resident of Wireless, Mandaue City.

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          We move for the exclusion of other witnesses, Your Honor.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          We have no other witness here.

COURT: 
          The other one who is supposed to testify.

PROS. GALANIDA:
          The
other
one is already outside.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          He is outside, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          He is there in the Clerk's office.
Alright, proceed.

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          Where was he?

COURT: 
          Just tell him to wait in the Clerk's office.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          With the kind permission of the Honorable court.

COURT: 
          Proceed.

                                                                                   DIRECT-EXAMINATION BY
                                                  PROS. RAMON JOSE DUYONGCO

      Q    Mr. Benjamin Colina, you told the Court that you are a rent a car driver. How long have you been a rent-a-car driver?

PAGE 11
      A    For 10 years already.

      Q    Continuously up to the present time?

      A    Yes, sir.

    Q    Now, could you please tell the Court if you are a member of any organization?

      A    Yes, I'm a member of the Park Place Hotel Uptown Drivers Association.

      Q    Now, in July of 1997, could you recall what type or what kind of vehicle you were driving?

      A    Nissan Vanette. It is a van.

      Q    On July 16, 1997, in the morning thereof, could you recall where you were?

       A    At 10:00 o'clock in the morning, I was already at the Park Place Hotel.

      Q    Where is this Park place Hotel located, Mr. Colina?

      A    It is located at Fuente Osmeņa, Cebu City.

      Q    Could you tell the Court what you were doing at that time?

      A    We used to standby in that place because that is the place where we can get passengers.

      Q    Are you telling the Court that you were driving that Nissan Vanette in the morning of July 16, 1997?

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          We object, Your Honor.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          Preliminary, Your Honor.

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          No, the witness has said, Your Honor, that . . . 

COURT: 
          No, what is the ground for your objection?

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          There's no basis for that question, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          Why is there no basis?

PAGE 12

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          Because the witness, Your Honor, has said that he went to Park Place Hotel just to standby.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          No, to look for passengers.

COURT: 
          Why don't you just reform your question Fiscal to avoid the objection of counsel?

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          He already answered, Your Honor. He was there to get passengers.

COURT: 
          He already answered. He was there . . .

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          He used to standby because that is the place where he usually get passengers.

COURT: 
          He already answered
it. Aright.

      A    Yes, sir.

    Q    Until what time were you driving that Nissan Vanette? 

      A    Until 12:00 o'clock midnight.

      Q    Of July 16, 1997?

      A    Yes, sir.

      Q    About 11:30 o'clock in the evening of July 16, 1997, could you recall where you were?

      A    Yes I can recall.

      Q    Please tell the Court.

      A    I was at the lobby beside Park Place because my Nissan Vanette was parked there in front of the hotel. 

      Q    Could you tell the court what you were doing about that time 11:30 o'clock in the evening?

      A    I Was waiting for my passenger because he would have come out at 11:00 o'clock but since he did not come out at that time so l kept on standing there at the lobby.

      Q    About that time 11:30 o'clock in the evening of July 16, 1997, could you recall if there was an

PAGE 13
instance or occasion wherein you had a conversation with any person or persons while you were at Park Place Hotel? 

      A    Yes, I was able to talk to a person at about 11:30 o'clock in the evening.

      Q    How many persons were you able to talk?

      A    2 persons.

      Q    Would you please tell the Court the circumstance or circumstances why you were able to talk with these 2 persons?

      A    There were 2 persons who approached me near my vehicle and asked me whether that said vehicle is for rent.

      Q    Now, what was your reply to them?

      A    I answered by saying, yes, that is for rent or for hire.

      Q    What was their answer, if any, after you told them that was for hire?

      A    And they told as that they would hire that vehicle for P2,500.00 a day provided it is for self-drive.

      Q    For how many days they would hire that vehicle?

      A    For 2 days.

      Q    What was your answer?

      A    I did not agree because they were asking for a self-drive.

      Q    Could you still recall who were those 2 persons who approached you in the evening of July 16, 1997 at about 11:30 o'clock?

      A    Yes, I can recall. 

      Q    Now, would you please look around and tell the Court if those 2 persons whom you saw talked with and approached you to rent a van are inside this courtroom?

      A    (witness went down from the witness stand . . .)

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          We
are marking it of record, Your Honor, that accused Rowen Adlawan upon being pointed to said, "lolo nimo". (better masturbate)

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          Which means . . . 

COURT: 
          What did he say?

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster). 

PAGE 14

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          "Lolo nimo.
"
(better masturbate.)

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          Meaning, fuck you.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          No, masturbate - or better masturbate.

COURT INTERPRETER: 
          (pointed to a person wearing a yellow t-shirt marked
BBRC and wearing shades when asked answered that his name is Rowen Adlawan)

COURT: 
          Well, it's useless to hold him in contempt because
he is already detained.

PROS. DUYONGCO:  
          May I request, Your Honor, that his other hand be also handcuffed as a penalty for a . . . 

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          Discourteous, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          Alright, where is the guard? Handcuff his 2 hands.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          Because he is now
discourteous to this Court.

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          Your Honor, please, we would like to object to the request, Your Honor, because the fact that he is already handcuffed on the other side. There's no reason at all . . .

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          He should even be chained, Your Honor. He should even be chained not only handcuffed.

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          But that is the opinion of the prosecution, Your Honor. 

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
         
Or his mouth be taped.

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster). 

PAGE 15
COURT:
          Well, he just uttered contemptuous words against this witness . . .

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          Or better still, Your Honor, his mouth
should be taped so that he could not utter anymore unsavory comments, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          So, what do you want me to do?

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          He should be taped.  

COURT: 
          Give him merienda (afternoon snack) because he said that?

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          Your Honor, please . . .

COURT: 
          Give him soft drink?

ATTY. DE JESUS:
          Granting without admitting, Your Honor . . .

COURT: 
          Why?

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          That the accused uttered the alleged phrase, Your Honor . . . 

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          Not alleged because I heard . . .

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          It does not mean, Your Honor, that it is a natural reaction of anybody who is confronted of an alleged witness who was not really there at the scene . . .

COURT: 
          That will be natural
but not inside the courtroom. Not in the courtroom where an important trial is being conducted. That is contempt of court. But, as I
said, he is already under detention, it is useless to hold him in contempt. The most we can do is, handcuff his 2 hands.

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster).

PAGE 16
PROS. GALANIDA:
         
May I be allowed to say something, Your Honor? We would like to put it on record that the allegation of the defense counsel that this witness was not there in defense of the very discourteous actuation of Rowan Adlawan is very uncalled for, Your Honor. Because they have not even yet established that that he was not really there whereas the prosecution is now establishing that he was really there. These 2 persons actually approached him and the discourteous act is actually placed on record to show the nature of this accused that even in the presence of this Honorable Court and in the presence of everybody, he could afford to say that very bad utterances to our witness.

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          Your Honor, please, with due respect . . . 

COURT :  
          Well, place it on record. Alright. 

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
         
With due respect, Your Honor, we also would like to put it on record that the accused, considering his educational attainment, is not expected, Your Honor, to know the totality of the decorum of this Honorable Court. 

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          We object, Your Honor. A person need not be - let us say highly educated for him to know that what he did was not right.  

ATTY. DE JESUS:  
          I am not saying highly educated, Your Honor.  

PROS. GALANIDA:  
          Highly educated or lowly educated.

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          We just would like to make it of record, Your Honor . . . 

COURT:  
          He owes respect.  

PROS. GALANIDA:  
          Yes. That shows his kind of person, Your Honor.  

COURT: 
          We cannot allow that to go - embarrassing.

PAGE 17
ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          We do not . . .

COURT: 
        Anyway, we are just handcuffing his hands. 

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
        We do not know also, Your Honor, why is it that the
witness purposely approached the accused when in fact the question was, if he could identify. Why would . . . 

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          Well, that was his way of identi - - -

COURT: 
          Well, you should have objected. Why did you not object?  

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          We do not . . .

COURT: 
          What he did was really point to the witness.

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          From where he is, Your Honor, he could readily point to the accused, Your Honor. 

COURT: 
          Let us stop these discussions. That is just a trivial matter. 

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          Just like what the other witnesses did, Your Honor, during the last hearing.

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          The defense counsel, Your Honor, could not prevent how the witness will
point. That is his prerogative whether he is going to point, to really step down and really tap his shoulder or whatever.

COURT: 
          Let us get over that.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          Anyway, may I proceed, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          Yes, proceed.

PAGE 18
PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          Anyway, Your Honor, that was the witness way of identifying to make
sure that he was really the one.

COURT: 
           So, you object. The next time he does that - other witnesses do that,
it's up for you to object. Just p
oint to him, you don't have to approach the accused.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
      Q    So, you have now pointed to that person whose name when asked
by this Court Interpreter answers the name of accused Rowen Adlawan?

       A    Yes, sir.

     Q    Now, there were 2 persons according to you who approached you to rent a self-drive van. Do you know the other person who approached you together with Rowan Adlawan?

      A    Yes, sir.

      Q    Would you please look around? May I request, Your Honor, the witness to step down and tap the shoulder of the person who accompanied accused Adlawan?

      A    (witness stepped down from the witness stand and tapped the right shoulder of the accused who when asked answered that his name is Davidson Valiente Rusia)

ATTY. DE JESUS: 
          Your Honor, please, we would like to make it of record that this is the only time that accused Rusia appears in court, Your Honor, timely with the presentation of this witness.

COURT: 
          Alright.

ATTY. SAORNIDO: 
          Your Honor, please, much as we wanted
to that the accused would also sit there, but we feel that security reasons demands such thing, Your Honor, I just wanted that my client
would sit beside me because of the common knowledge that passion has been so high between my client and the accused, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          Anyway, the Court is allowing him to sit there. Proceed, Fiscal.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
     
Q    Now, Mr. Colina, you pointed to accused Rowen Adlawan

PAGE 19
as one of the 2 persons you met and talked with in the evening of July 16, 1997. Are you very sure that it was Rowen Adlawan?

      A    Yes, sir.

      Q    And why are you very sure? 

      A    Because Rowen Adlawan used to standby there at the Croissant Express Machine.

      Q    Going back to the time - you told the Court that these 2 persons now you identified as Rowen Adlawan and Davidson Valiente Rusia, whom according to you approached you to rent your vehicle. How far were they from you when they approached you?

      A    More or less 1 armslength.

      Q    By the way, Mr. Colina, it was nighttime when you met those 2 persons. Could you tell the Court the lighting condition of the place at about the time they approached you?

      A    In front of the Park Place is really very bright especially that there are 2 electric posts with lamps.

     Q    A while ago, you told the Court that you saw Rowen Adlawan because he used to standby at Croissant Express Machine. By the way, where is this Croissant Express located?

      A    It is located beside the Park Place Hotel at Fuente Osmeņa. 

      Q    Now, how about accused Davidson Valiente Rusia, did you see already this person before July 16, 1997?

      A    Yes, I saw Davidson Valiente Rusia in the months of April and May.

      Q    Where?

      A    The same place because they were together.

      Q    Whom are you referring to then that Davidson Valiente Rusia were together, with whom?

      A    Rowen Adlawan and Tisoy or Davidson Valiente Rusia.

      Q    You told the Court that these 2 were always together entering Croissant Express. Are you referring to that same Croissant Express Machine at Fuente Osmeņa? 

      A    Yes, sir. 

      Q    Before July 16, 1997, did you already come to know the full name of accused Rowen Adlawan? 

      A    Not yet.

PAGE 20
     
Q    So, how did you come to know then that his real name is Rowen Adlawan?

      A    I know the name Rowen Adlawan at the time I was invited by the CIG to see different pictures and I pointed to them that this is the person I saw.

      Q    About how many pictures were shown to you by the CIG people?

      A    Maybe more than 30 pictures.

      Q    So, by pointing at the picture of Rowen Adlawan, did you already come to know that his name is Rowen Adlawan? Please elaborate and enlighten the court.

      A    I only know his real name at the CIG because when the picture was turnover, there was a name Rowan Adlawan written at the back of the picture.

      Q    Thank you, Mr. Colina. How about accused Davidson Valiente Rusia, did you already come to know his name before July 16, 1997.

      A    No, sir.

PROS. DUYONGCO: 
          That would be all for the witness, Your Honor.

COURT:
          So, the cross-examination of this witness is also deferred like the other prosecution witnesses when the accused already have their counsel de parte if they decide to cross-examine him.

COURT:
          Alright, you may present your next witness. 

PROS. MIRO: 
          Our next witness, Your Honor, is Mr. Miguel Vergara. He-will be presented by private prosecutor, Atty. Bienvenido Saniel, subject to our direction
and control. 

COURT: 
          State the purpose. 

ATTY. SANIEL: 
          Your Honor, please, we are offering the testimony of this witness to establish the fact that in the evening of July 16, 1997 at about 11:45, he was approached by a person inquiring about whether there was any transportation for hire in the vicinity of the place where he was situating himself at that
time and this person later turned out to be Mr. Rowen

PAGE 21
Adlawan and also upon his suggestion, Rowen Adlawan talked to the driver of the transportation which was a van and whose driver and conductor, this witness also knows.

COURT: 
          /to Court Interpreter 
          Swear the witness. 

ATTY. SANIEL: 
          And are finally offering the testimony of this witness to substantially corroborate the testimony of Rusia, Your Honor.

COURT INTERPRETER TO WITNESS: 
          Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth in this hearing?

WITNESS: 
          I do.

COURT INTERPRETER TO WITNESS: 
          Please state your
name, age, civil status, and other personal circumstances.

WITNESS: 
          Miguel Vergara, 58 years old, married, a dispatcher at South Bus Terminal, and a resident of C. Padilla St., Cebu City.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
          With the kind permission of the Honorable Court. 

COURT: 
          Proceed.

                                                                        DIRECT-EXAMINATION BY 
                                                                       ATTY. BIENVENIDO SANIEL

      Q    Witness, you said that you are a dispatcher. Could you please. explain to the Honorable Court what work you exactly do as a dispatcher?

      A    As a dispatcher, I have to look for passengers for a bus.

      Q    How about other means of transportation, do you also act as dispatcher for them?

      A    Yes, if somebody ask me to look for passengers.

PAGE 22
      Q    Now, where do you do your work as a dispatcher? 

      A    At the South Bus Terminal.

      Q    For what bus transportation?

      A    Librando Bus Transportation.

      Q    Where do the buses of the Librando Bus Transportation park while waiting for passengers?

      A    Inside the garage.

      Q    Where is the garage of the Librando Bus Transportation located?

      A    It is located in front of the Coca-Cola Plant.

      Q    Is that along Natalio Bacalso Avenue otherwise know as South Expressway?

      A    Yes, sir.

      Q    Aside from being a dispatcher, do you have any other means of livelihood?

      A    Yes, I have a small store. 

      Q    What kind of store is this?  

      A    It is a rolling store.

      Q    And Where is your rolling store placed? 

      A    It is just located near the Elite Bakery.

      Q    And in relation to the parking place of the buses of the Librando Bus Transportation, how far or near is your rolling store to that parking space? 

      A    It is in between the Librando Bus Transportation and the DOLE.

      Q    If you were to walk from the rolling store to the parking place of the Librando buses, how many minutes would it take? 

      A    Less than a minute.

      Q    Now as a dispatcher, what time do you start in the day?

      A    6:00 o'clock in the morning.

      Q    And what time do you finish doing the job of a dispatcher?

      A    Also 6:00 o'clock the following morning. 

      Q    What time do you tend your store?

PAGE 23
      A  9:00 o'clock in the evening.

       Q    On July 16, 1997 at about 11:30 in the evening, what were you doing?

      A    I was just tending my store.

      Q    And while you were tending your store, could you tell us what happened?

      A    Nothing happened except that one person approached me.

      Q    When that person approached you, what was his purpose, if you know?

      A    He requested me where to get a vehicle for hire. 

      Q    And what was your answer if, there was any?

      A    So I immediately pointed to the van located near my store.

      Q    And after you pointed to the van, what did that person do?

      A    He walked and approached the driver of the van.

      Q    By the way, at that time when the person approached you asking you if there was any transportation that you knew that was for hire, did you know the name of the person?

      A    I did not know his name but only his facial appearance. 

      Q    Now, why were you able to see clearly his face? 

      A    Yes, sir.

      Q    Why were you able to see clearly his face?

      A    Because we were facing to each other.

      Q    And what about the lighting condition in that area where you were talking to each other, what can you say about the lighting condition? 

      A    It's really very bright because there is a sodium light there that illuminates the area.

      Q    Now, after you saw this man talking to the driver of the van, what happened next?

      A    The vehicle moved.

      Q    In what direction did it go? 

      A    The vehicle went towards Petron. 

      Q    Petron Gas Station?

PAGE 24
     
A    Yes, sir.

      Q    And what happened there when you saw the van moving towards the inside of the Petron Gas Station?

      A    The white van went inside the Petron Station backed up and there was another white car. 

PROS. GALANIDA:
          Excuse
me, Your Honor, there was a portion not translated. 

COURT: 
         
Will you translate the portion?

PROS. GALANIDA:
         
"Ang katong van giatrasan niya ang awto." ("That van backed up towards the white car.")

COURT INTERPRETER:
          Finished. Already translated.
 

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          May we request, Your Honor, that the recorded answer be read.

COURT STENOGRAPHER:
          The white van went inside the
Petron Station backed up and there was another white car. 

PROS. GALANIDA:
          Excuse me, Your Honor, because the testimony was, "giatrasan sa van ang awto."
 

      A    The white van went inside the Petron Station and backed up towards the white car.

COURT: 
      Q    Did you notice the persons riding in the white car?

      A    2 female persons alighted and 2 male persons also alighted from the white car.

      Q    Will you describe the conditions of their having alighted accompanied by as you said 2 male persons, how did they alight and how did the male persons behave and how did the female persons behave?

      A    The first one who alighted from the car was a male person.

      Q    Do you remember who he was; do you recognize him?

(NOTE: For the benefit of our foreign readers, blue wordings is our translation from Tagalog (Philippine language) to English ...the webmaster).

PAGE 25
       A    A big built and a mestizo looking person. 

     Q   But can you remember his face?

      A    Yes, Your Honor.

      Q    Is he here in this courtroom?

      A    I'm not sure because they were looking down. 

      Q    So, you cannot remember his face?

      A    I cannot remember but they were all mestizo looking persons.

COURT: 
          Proceed.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
      Q    By the way why were you able to  observe what was happening inside the
. . .

COURT : 
      Q    No, ask him first - who was the person who approached you and asked you if they could rent a car or van? Who was that person who approached you that night for a car rental or van?

      A    Adlawan, a person with a short black hair. 

      Q    Can you point him out if he is in court right now? Point to him.

COURT INTERPRETER:
          He wants to approach the person.

COURT: 
          Alright.

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          Your Honor, please . . .

COURT: 
          No, you stay about 1 meter away.

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          So that, Your Honor, we would like to know - the witness why is it that he wants to go near, Your Honor?

COURT: 
          Because the Court wants
him to go near. 

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          No, because he may . . .

PAGE 26
COURT:
          The Court wants him to go near. 
Sit down.
           /to the Witness 
          You stay 1 meter away.

COURT INTERPRETER: 
          (Witness
went down from the witness stand pointing to a person wearing a yellow t-shirt marked BBRC when asked answered that his name is Rowen Adlawan)

COURT: 
          Alright, you may proceed.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
      Q    Why were you able to observe what was happening inside that Petron Gas Station?

      A    I followed the van because I was not given a commission.

COURT: 
      Q    Do you know who was the driver and the conductor of that van?

      A    Yes, Your. Honor.

      Q    Are they here in this courtroom now? 

      A    Yes, they are here.

      Q    Will you point them out and approach them within 1 meter's length and point them out?

      A    (witness pointing to a person wearing an orange t--shirt marked BBRC when asked answered that his name is Alberto Caņo)

      A    What about the conductor?

      A    (witness pointing to a person wearing an orange t-shirt marked BBRC when asked answered that his name is Ariel Balansag)

      Q    Did these conductor and driver give you your commission that night?

      A    No, that's why I followed them.

      Q    Dial you ever receive your commission for that hiring of the van?

      A    No, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          Proceed.

PAGE 27
ATTY. SANIEL: 
      Q    Are you familiar with the physical appearance of that
van that was driven by accused Caņo?

      A    Yes, sir.

      Q    Why are you familiar?

      A    I was not given the commission so I wrote the plate number of the van.

      Q    But before July 16 , 1997 have you seen already this van being parked in that vicinity?

      A    I always see that van.

      Q    If you are shown pictures of a motor vehicle, would you be able to identify the transportation of the motor vehicle that is portrayed in the pictures?

      A    Yes, sir. 

      Q    The van that was rented that night?

      A    Yes, sir.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
      Q    By the way, what was the plate number of the van?
 

      A    GGC-491.

      Q    I show you now one picture. Please tell the Court what relation has that transportation to the van that you said was hired?

      A    This is the same van. (witness also pointing to the Plate No. GGC-491)

      Q    Showing to you another picture of a motor vehicle. Please tell the Honorable Court, if you know, what transportation that is and what relation it has to the van that you said was hired?

      A    The same van.

      Q    Showing still to you another picture showing the side of the transportation, please tell the Court what relation has that to the van that you said was hired? 

      A    This is the same van. (witness again pointing to the body number)

ATTY. SANIEL:
          May we request, Your Honor, that the pictures identif
ied by the witness, be marked consecutively as follows:

PAGE 28
the first picture as Exhibit "V"; the second picture as Exhibit "V-1"; the third picture as Exhibit "V-2"; and may we request, Your Honor, that the Plate No. GGC-491, be encircled and marked as Exhibit "V-3".  

COURT: 
         
Mark them.

ATTY. SANIEL:
          May I continue, Your Honor.

COURT:
         
Proceed.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
      Q    Now, you said that the first person to alight from the white car was a
mestizo looking male person, a big built. Now, after that male person, who alighted next?

COURT:
      Q    No, you describe first that male person who first alighted. Describe him - how tall was he, what was his body built, what was he wearing?

      A    It was not so clear to me because the place was a little bit dark or dim.

     Q   You did not notice the height or clothing of that person?

      A    I did not focus my attention to the clothes that he was wearing, his height, because what I was interested only was my commission.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
      Q    Now, after that male mestizo looking person, who alighted next from the white car?

      A    A woman.

      Q    After that female person, who alighted?

COURT:
      Q    How old was the woman more or less, what was the age? Did you notice?

      A    I'm not sure of her age.

COURT:
          Alright, proceed.

      Q    By the way, how far were you from that white car where the persons alighted? If you are here now, how far away were they from that white car? 

PAGE 29
      A    12 feet.

      Q   12 feet? Will you indicate because he might not understand what is 12 feet? Is that far enough?

ATTY. SANIEL:
          M
ay we request, Your Honor,
the witness to step down and to go to a point here in the courtroom in order to indicate the distance where the white car was parked?

      A    (witness went down from the witness stand indicating. . .)

COURT: 
          Indicating a place, indicating a spot, more or less.
How far away? How many meters would that be? Sukatin mo na. (Measure it already.) The distance that was measured by the Interpreter of this Court to be about - how many meters?

COURT INTERPRETER: 
          450 cms.

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          4.5 meters, more or less. 

COURT: 
          4.5 meters - do you have any objection Gentlemen for the defense in that measurement? 4.5 meters?

PROS. GALANIDA: 
          450 cms. There are 100 cms. in 1 meter. So,
it's 4.5 meters more or less.

ATTY. DEBALOCUS: 
          4.5 meters more or less.

COURT: 
          Alright, you may proceed.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
      Q    Now, after these 4 persons had alighted from . . .

COURT: 
          No, ask him first  - After the
first woman alighted, who alighted next? One by one.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
      Q    After the first
woman had alighted, who came out next from the car?

      A    Another woman. 

PAGE 30
COURT: 
      A    Did you notice her face or appearance?

      A    Yes, she was facing me but it was so sudden. 

      Q    And these 2 women were young or old?

      A    They were still young.

      Q    And what did you notice about them when they alighted from the car?

      A    They were escorted by the.2 male persons.

      Q    2 male person are you referring to, the mestizo like persons you said before?

      A    Yes, they were mestizo looking persons.

      Q    What do you mean they were escorted; what do you mean by that, escorted, were they held; were any part of their bodies held by these 2 mestizo like male persons?

      A    Yes. (witness painting to his waist) They were held by their waist lines.

      Q    Will you indicate? Call the policewoman how they held the 2 women?

      A    (witness holding the left hand of the policewoman around his neck and with his right hand holding the woman around her waist)

      Q    What about the other woman, how was she held by the male counterpart?

      A    The same. (witness indicating that the other woman was held in the same manner as the first woman by the male counterpart)

    Q    And what did these 2 male escorts doing with these 2 women?

      A    The same position. They loaded the 2 women into the van.

     Q    Now, after these 2 mestizo looking male persons had escorted the 2 females into the van, were there any persons who stepped out of the white car? 

      A    No more.

COURT: 
          Proceed.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
      Q    After the 2 women had already been loaded inside the van, what did these 2 mestizo looking men do? 

      A    They boarded inside the van. 

PAGE 31
      Q    With the 2 women?

      A    Yes, Your Honor.

COURT:
          Proceed.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
      Q    And what was done to the door at the rear of the van? 

      A    The rear door was closed.

COURT: 
      Q    What about the conductor and the driver of the van, where did they stay?

      A    They wave seated at the front of the van.

      Q    You mean the driver, Mr. Caņo, drove the car? 

      A    Yes, Your Honor.

      Q    And the conductor, Mr. Balansag, sat beside him in the front seat?

      A    Yes, Your Honor.

COURT: 
          Proceed.

ATTY. SANIEL:
      Q   
Why do you say that it was Caņo, the driver, who drove the van and Ariel, the conductor, was together with him in the front seat?

      A    Because I was at the gasoline station. I really saw them at the pumping station.

      Q   Now, earlier in that evening of July 16, did you see the driver and conductor?

      A    Yes, I saw them.

      Q    Where did you see them?

      A    Just near my store. 

      Q    What were they doing?

      A    They were waiting for passengers.

      Q    Now, how about that man who approached you and asked you if there was any transportation and whom you later identified this afternoon to be Rowen Adlawan, where did he go?

PAGE 32
      A    He went towards Petron.

      Q    What I mean to ask you is, did he go in that van?

ATTY. DEBALOCUS:
          We object, Your Honor.

COURT:
          No, ask him - what vehicle did Rowen take?

      A    GGC-491.

      Q    What do you mean, the van?

      A    Yes, Your Honor.

      Q    He went into the back door of that van?

      A    Yes, Your honor.

      Q    After the 2 females and the 2 male persons had entered the van, you mean to say that Rowen Adlawan followed them inside the van?

      A    I did not see already Rowen Adlawan when he entered inside the van.

      Q   You cannot say with certainty what vehicle Rowen Adlawan rode in during that incident?

      A    I cannot.

COURT: 
          Alright, proceed.

ATTY. SANIEL: 
          That would be all for the witness, Your Honor. 

COURT: 
          The cross-examination of this witness is also deferred
like the other prosecution witness.

                                                                   O R D E R

                                                             (See the records) 

Session Adjourned.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

                                                                               CERTIFICATION

                            I hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and correct transcript of stenographic notes
                     taken
in the above entitled cases with specified date, time and place, appearing 
                 therein, to
the best of my knowledge, hearing, and ability.

                                                                                                      SIGNED: ALICIA L. FORMENTERA
                                                                                                                        Stenographer        

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

COMMENTS AND OBSERVATIONS FROM THE WEBMASTER:
       A good portion of today's trial is again devoted by the judge on the same issues, why the defense still does not have lawyers of their own choice.... this? in spite of the earlier agreement with the accused that they will have their own lawyers by September 24.  Speaking about dilatory tactics?  

          Two more prosecution witnesses are presented in today's hearing, with the accused still not being represented with lawyers of their own choice - making a total, as of today, of 6 witnesses without being cross-examined by the defense.  

          First to testify is rent-a-car driver Benjamin Colina. He alleged that Rusia and Adlawan approached him in front of Park Place Hotel in busy Fuente Osmeņa Circle wanting to rent his van, "provided it is for self-drive". 

          Fuente Osmeņa circle, especially within the Park Place Hotel, had and still has many watch-your-car boys, cigarette vendors, dispatchers present at all times. Anyone that parks within that area is immediately approached by these boys offering their trade. Strange that the police was not able to pick-up any of these boys to testify seeing anyone of them that night. More so, one will not go to that area if one has two girls with them that they have just kidnapped and raped.

          No mention at all of the "raining cats and dogs" that particular night by the witness. Also, the same pattern of questions and answers as all the other previous witnesses, i.e...  He alleged that he didn't know their names until after he saw their pictures upon investigation by the police, but he "remembered" seeing them before, "always together entering Croissant express" in the months of  April and May. (Croissant express was a popular and busy coffee and pastry shop beside the Park Place Hotel.) Surprisingly, the witness in spite of the many people frequenting the coffee shop, still remembered seeing two people he never met or knew before. Another pattern of their witnesses testimony is confirmed; the lightning conditions, "very bright especially that there were 2 electric posts with lamps".  

          Second to testify that afternoon was a bus dispatcher, Miguel Vergara. He alleged that one person approached him while he was tending his store and asked him where he could hire a van. He pointed to a van near his store and that person approached the driver and negotiated directly with him. What I cannot understand is why he approached the store owner and did not go directly to the van driver. 

         He also testified that he run after the van because he was not paid his commission. What commission? For just pointing at the van? He was never involved with the negotiation. It was made by that person and the driver directly. 

          He later identified Adlawan as the person who approached him. 

          The witness also testified seeing two mestizo looking persons bring two women from a white car into the van while they were parked in a gasoline station. Why in the gasoline station where they have been could easily discovered? 

          He, however, couldn't identify the male nor the female companions. 

         He also testified that he "always sees that van" within the vicinity and knew the name of the driver and conductor, why then write down the van's plate number. 

          Without fail, notice again the similarity of his "answers" with the other earlier witness: 1) He never mentioned the weather condition that night. In fact both Adlawan and himself casually walked from his store to the gas station. 2) Lightning condition - "It's really very bright because there is a sodium light there that illuminates the area?" and 3) He knows Caņo and Balansag because they always park their van within the vicinity.

NOTE:   THE ABOVE TEXT IS THE FAITHFUL REPRODUCTION OF THE ORIGINAL
        DOCUMENT REFORMATTED FOR  CLEARER APPRECIATION.              

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