'was the star witness' word...... enough?

All the above defense witnesses’ testimonies were totally disregarded by the courts against the testimony of the lone star witness, Davidson Valiente Rusia. An illegitimate son of Rene Bacalso, his mother brought him to the U.S. where she married an American. He grew up there, got involved in gang wars, and became member of different groups or gangs.

Rusia has been previously convicted in the U.S.A. ......TWICE! One for burglary of a computer store and another for forging a check he stole from an incompetent person. He was given a suspended sentence on one and served about four months on the other.

However, his suspended sentence was recalled and had a standing warrant of arrest at the time he left back for the Philippines . He will be arrested if ever he goes back to the U.S. 

Rusia was a member of a satanic cult and twice tried to kill himself. He was instructed to seek professional psychiatric help. He answers to at least six aliases.

He came back to the Philippines sometime in 1996, and stayed with his aunt in Labangon, Cebu City before he was driven away for stealing her aunt’s son’s jeans; went to his uncle, owner of Wayne’s Inn but had to leave because his uncle was ‘strict’. Since then, he ‘crushed’ in different homes of his new found friends. He did not go to school and claimed that he was earning a living by working with a goldsmith who he cannot name. 

Among the glaring discrepancies or questions in Davidson Rusia’s testimony are:

1. He testified that the sisters’ mouths were taped twice during the alleged kidnapping. The first time was in the car from Ayala to Guadalupe. Then again, in the van from Cebu City to Carcar .

TAPED FACE. More of insuring that the victim will not recognize her perpetuators and not around her mouth to keep her from shouting as testified by Rusia.

Yet in the above picture presented in court, the tape is clearly seen around the face of the girl. More of insuring that the victim will not be able to recognize her perpetuators and not around the mouth to keep her from shouting as Rusia testified. 

2. He also testified that Paco raped again Marijoy while she was inside the van, followed turn-by-turn by Adlawan, Wang-wang, the driver and the conductor. Then they took Marijoy out of the van and just put her lying down on the ground. She was very weak and they had to carry her and pushed her down the ravine.


FULLY DRESSED RAPE VICTIM? In most rape and murder cases the victims are normally found to be naked or at the least without panties.

Yet in the above picture presented in court by the police, the body found in the ravine was fully dressed, complete with bra, panty, shirt and denim pants. 

Considering how difficult it is for a woman to put on blue denim jeans, who among the alleged perpetuators had the difficult task to dress her up while inside the small van? Surely not Marijoy since she was too weak even to stand up. 

In most cases, if not all, where the victim is killed after being raped, the victim is normally found naked..... or at the least, without any panties. 

3. He also said he did not know whatever happened to Jackie since he disembarked in Ayala and Jackie was left in the van with the group. 

It is difficult to believe that after everyone in Cebu were crazy looking for Jackie, yet in his court testimony, he said he met Adlawan  5 or 6 days after the incident, and claimed he did not have a chance to ask him what happened to Jackie

 Assuming that he really was with the group, wasn't he even curious to know what finally happened to her? Weren't the police interested to find out where Jackie was? If they believed his story, then why did they not put him in the same jail with the rest of "his" friends to find out where Jackie was? He then could have turned state witness after getting this very vital information.

INTEGRITY QUESTIONED. Taking his crusade further beyond protestations, Mike del Gallego painstakingly sifted through records unearthing what he called 5 discrepancies in the testimony of star witness Davidson Rusia (above), on whose statements the Chiong case was decided by the late Judge Martin Ocampo.
.....................CDN File Photo

Was it because they already knew the real story on what really happened to the Chiong sisters and the trial was just a charade to "solve" the crime and clear the real perpetuators from any involvement with the disappearance of the two sisters?

4. The star witness furthered  testified that the Guadalupe house in Cebu City, where he alleged the girls were first rape, was the safehouse of Josman Aznar.

Yet in the affidavit of the real tenants of the house at that time, Catherine Bustillo, never ever mentioned knowing Josman Aznar. Other names of Rusia’s friends were mentioned but never Aznar. 

Neither did she ever mentioned Paco Larrañaga as among Rusia’s friends.

Also, he never ever mentioned seeing any of the 5 girls residing in that Guadalupe house that night. Where were they? Who opened the door for them?

When asked in open court, who opened the door for them, Rusia refused to answer and the judge stopped the defense lawyers from pressing any further for an answer

5. Rusia testified that his conscience was bothering him and that’s why he decided to confess and tell everything.

 However, in the affidavit executed by his acquaintance and cellmate in the PNP jail, Rusia admitted that he was tortured by the police to admit to the crime.

        It is important to note that  Rusia was arrested on May 8, 1998 (10 months after the Chiong sisters were abducted from Ayala) and was brought into the custody of the Criminal Investigation Group (CIG). He alleged, bothered by his conscience and confessed to the crimes charged; reenacted the crime on May 10, 1998; signed his sworn statement and confession on May 11, 1998. He did not even have neither a lawyer nor any of his relatives present from arrest, custody, and up to the time his signing of his affidavit on May 12, 1998.

            It is no secret that the Chiongs showered Rusia with many favors after he decided to cooperate with the police. Even after he admitted raping one of the sisters, Mrs. Chiong still continued giving him favors. Why? What does she know that we do not know?

  HAPPY BIRTHDAY TISOY! Mrs. Thelma Chiong
  presents her gifts to the government   'star wit- 
  ness',  during  a break in the trial.

Mr. Dionisio Chiong even admitted in a radio interview last January 27, 2003 that they have been helping Rusia. Mr. Chiong even shouldered the down payment for a motorbike that Rusia bought from a local store, paid the pig Rusia accidentally hit while driving the motorcycle. He still gave him money until  Christmas of 2002.

         However, the former star witness got the ire of the victims' father last January 2003 after he reportedly told a broadcaster that the Chiong couple had abandoned him after the court resolved the case of their two daughters in 1999. In denying the allegation, Mr. Chiong called Rusia a “hustler” and a “liar”.

        Are we going to send six young men to the death chamber on the say-so of a drug addict, a “hustler and a “liar”, and a convicted criminal? Is the trial judge correct in placing greater weight on Rusia's word over that of an entire class of law-abiding students, their teachers and school administration who vouched for Larrañaga's presence in their cooking school in Quezon City ?

         Rusia's confession came out almost 10 months after the alleged kidnapping. Did the police and the prosecutors then tailored his confession to conform to the physical evidence and affidavits they have gathered so far?