The president of the Philippines, Gloria Macapagal, promised Defense minister José Bono today that she will do everything in her power to save the life of the young Hispano-Philippine, Paco Larrañaga, who has been condemned to death. "She has promised me that, while she is president, the execution will not take place, and secondly, that she will do everything she can to try and help him," explained Mr. Bono at a press conference following this morning's meeting at the Malacañang Palace. The minister phoned the condemned man's parents from Ms Arroyo's office to break the news, which Mr Bono described as "highly satisfactory."
There was an important development in the case just last week when a former policeman closely involved in the investigation, Roy Codiñera, admitted to the Cebu Daily News that Larrañaga and two others were innocent. Mr. Codiñera explained that the prosecution team's main witness, Davidson Rusia, who testified against all the accused in mmmmm
exchange for his own freedom, had lied about the participation of Larrañaga and two others.
Larrañaga, who is the son of the former pelota Basque star, Francisco
Larrañaga, and Margarita González, who is from the Philippines, was
condemned to death along with five others for the kidnapping, rape and
murder of two sisters in Cebu in 1997. Spanish and European institutions
have been exerting increasing pressure on the
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