Friday, July 25, 1997 

Found body that of........ missing girl
Fingerprints match; .............................. Chiong sister still missing

     THE body of a girl found dumped in a remote cliff in Carcar town last week was confirmed to be that of 21-year old Marijoy Chiong.

     Police investigators have rejected the kidnap for ransom angle.

     Her sister, Jacqueline, 23, is still missing.

     A dead woman was reportedly found in Barili town, but police said none has been found there.

     Devastated by the laboratory's confirmation the family refused to talk to news reporters who visited their house at Villa Leyson subdivision in Barangay Bacayan, Talamban, Cebu city.

     Insp. Edgardo Lenizo, PNP fingerprint identification branch chief, said the skin of the right thumb scraped from the victim was found similar to Marijoy's right thumbprint on registration records of the Commission on Elections (Comelec).

     Marijoy, a college student at the University of San Carlos, was a registered voter in Barangay Bacayan.

     PNP medico legal officer Nestor Satur, who autopsied the body, also confirmed that Marijoy was raped before she was flung alive, with handcuffs, down a 150 meter-deep ravine in Sitio Tan-awan, Barangay Guadalupe, Carcar. The town is 40 kilometers southeast of Cebu city.

     In a news conference at the Police Regional Office (PRO) headquarters yesterday, Lenizo showed to reporters enlarged photographs of the two right thumbprints of Marijoy. 

     Lenizo marked the Comelec thumbprint as "standard" and the victim's scraped right thumb as "question".

     Although the PNP still has to finish the test of Marijoy's dental records, Lenizo said he is confident his findings is 100 per cent accurate.

     "Notice that the thumbprint and the rest of the fingers have wrinkles because of the early stage of decomposition," he said.

                      MORE SPECIMEN
     But Lenizo said he needs more specimen to examine Marijoy's left thumbprint. Her left thumbprint in the voter's registration form was blurred.

     "We are morally convinced that the victim's body really belongs to Marijoy," said Sr. Supt. Fritz Quiñanola, PRO 7 deputy director for administration.

     He said the victim's orange Giordano shirt and her pair of Guess denim jeans were the ones worn by Marijoy when she disappeared while waiting for a ride at Ayala Center Wednesday night. 

      In the same press briefing, medico legal officer Satur said aside from multiple abrasions and contusions, the girl had major fractures in the skull, left shoulder, bones, right ribs and knee joint as a result of the fall.

     Some of these injuries could have been inflicted by a blunt instrument, he added.

     He noticed "tissue reaction" on the victim's body, indicating that she was still alive when thrown into the cliff.

     Meanwhile, PRO 7 Chief Ramsey Ocampo yesterday created Task Force Chiong to find out the motive for the killing and speed up the search for Jacqueline.

     Ocampo named Quiñanola to head the task force and the Criminal Investigation Group (CIG) 7 to lead the investigation.

     The police offices of Cebu city, Cebu province and the Carcar police station will coordinate with the CIG 7 in the investigation.

     Although the kidnap for ransom theory has been junked, Quiñanola said they will pursue other angles of the case. 

     "We are pursuing a certain lead which we cannot divulge. But at this time, it could not have been a kidnap for ransom," he said.

     Quiñanola urged those who know about the incident to report to the police.

     But a friend of the Chiongs, who asked not to be named, said the disappearance of the sisters could have been business-related.

     The mother of Marijoy's friend received a call from a man who threatened them and the Chiong family in the vernacular: "Pagbantay mo kay kamo ang akong isunod." (Beware, you will be next.) 

     Her friend's mother is a co-employee of Marijoy's father Dionisio Chiong, purchasing manager of Mandaue-based Hilton Heavy equipment.

     The phoned-in threat, relayed to the Chiongs, came hours before the two sisters disappeared Wednesday night.

     At their residence in Villa Leyson, reporters were barred from entering the house. They were met by a woman who introduced herself as a close family-friend.

     The woman gave a conflicting theory. She said the Chiong sisters could have been abducted and victimized by drug-crazed youths.

     The family, she said, has asked the media to give them enough time because they could not take the brutal killing of their daughter.

     At the Capitol, Gov. Pablo Garcia says the sister's disappearance was is "something that should inspire more vigilance by parents."

      After a meeting with Cebu provincial police director Mario Potot, Garcia said the "evidence" of  mmm

torture on Marijoy's body could mean that her abductors "were drug addicts because these were acts of abnormal persons." 

        VICTIMS. Marijoy (top) and Jacqueline   Chiong.
        Jacqueline was still missing.

       He added that if this is the case, the incident "could be an indication of Cebu's drug problem."

     Garcia said he will discuss with Potot the suggestion to assign some barangay tanods to monitor the Tan-awan cliff.

     The cliff is notorious for being a "salvage area" where bodies of murdered persons are dumped. It is also a favored suicide site.

     A Tan-awan resident, interviewed by ABS-CBN, said she heard men laughing and the sound of a bottle being broken the night before Marijoy's body was found. 

     Another female resident said she smelled a strong odor, similar to marijuana leaves.

     Meanwhile, as requested by the Chiong family, the victim's body was taken from the Tupas Memorial homes in Carcar to the Rolling Hills Funeral Parlor in Banilad, Mandaue city late yesterday afternoon.

     The body had lain for six days at the Carcar at the Carcar funeral parlor, unclaimed by relatives, until a fingerprint expert test confirmed it to be Marijoy's.

     No member of the family came to fetch her. The young woman still had a handcuff on her left wrist that had to be sawed off before she was placed in a coffin.

     A brother of the victim, Dennis, and some relatives went to see the body last Saturday, a day after it was retrieved from the place it was dumped. 

     Dennis refused to confirm that the dead woman was his sister although the attire Marijoy had when last seen alive were the same as those of the dead woman.

     The facial appearance of the dead woman, according to Dennis, was unrecognizable.

     Esperanza F. Garcia, the governor's wife and a close friend of the family, confirmed through the telephonewith Eliazar Tupas, the funeral parlor's owner that a representative from the Chiong family will claim the body.

     She arranged for its transfer to Mandaue city and paid for the P30,000 fee charged by Tupas.

     According to Jojo Cornejo, Rolling Hills' manager, the Chiong family asked that the coffin be sealed. Family members will have her buried without seeing the body.

     Meanwhile, CIG 7 operatives went to Barili, a town next to Carcar, to check reports that the body of another woman had been found in one of the town's barangays along the national highway.


Comments:  Although the police admittedly still had to finish the test of Marijoy's dental records, and the fingerprint expert still needs more specimen to examine Marijoy's left thumbprint, they all agreed that they were already 100% sure that the body was Marijoy's.

     Contrary to our Filipino culture, no one accompanied the body from Carcar to Mandaue. Why?  Wasn't the Chiong family fully convinced that the victim was really Marijoy. 

     If reports are through that the coffin was sealed, then how and who convinced Mrs. Chiong during the trial to testify that that was Marijoy found in Carcar.

     Just imagine, six of the seven accused will be put to death on orders of the Supreme Court based only on one wrinkled, decomposing skin of the victim's right thumb and the testimony of a star witness of dubious character.  

     Outside of Mrs. Thelma Chiong, no other member of the family ever testified to identify that the body was Marijoy's.

      What about the reported "phone call threat received by a co-employee of Dionisio Chiong? Was that ever investigated? 

     And what about the ABS-CBN report that a Tan-awan resident heard men laughing and the sound of a bottle being broken the night before Marijoy's body was found . Since the body was found on the 18th, the night before would have been the 17th of July and not the 16th, the evening the girls were said to have disappeared. Did the police check out this lead?

     Furthermore, In the same press briefing, medico legal officer Satur said aside from multiple abrasions and contusions, the girl had major fractures in the skull, left shoulder, bones, right ribs and knee joint as a result of the fall. No where does he mention that all the teeth were broken, up and down as "testified" by one of the prosecutors during the trial. For more on this, please visit Part 3 of this website.

     Who was the woman who introduced herself as a close family-friend and gave the first conflicting theory that the Chiong sisters could have been abducted and victimized by drug-crazed youths?

     Her pronouncement actually started the police to abandon their "other" theories and concentrate to look for drug-crazed youths as the principal suspects.  

NOTE:  1.  RED COLOR OURS FOR EMPHASIS.                                                                                

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