But it is (by all means) Â good that the authorities have under Â custody Â the 34-year old suspect- Danao resident Geovani Orane. He is a dangerous Â gunslinger and a drug personality.Â
Dangerous because of the cold-bloodied manner of execution Â that Â Orane allegedly sent Chairman Mau or Maurito Lim, 71 years old Â , a radio broadcaster- on Valentines Day this year to his Creator by a Colt 45 caliber pistol, drawn from the hip. An unorthodox manner, that also helped give him away to the authorities.
Dangerous because when arrested in the past Â in Talibon- he was caught with an unlicensed firearm and explosives- not an ordinary assassin, then, that Â one can just Â dread, but more like “Rambo” -capable of wide-scale destruction and mayhem.
Geovani is a drug personality – because he was nabbed in a Â “drug buy-bust operation” by the cops at the back of the city Central School near Rocha street where the suspect had temporary residence. It happened to be the home of the family of the late Atty Â Aleckoy Lim, an outspoken Â councilor and a long-time high-profile practicing lawyer- until death by sickness put a finis to both careers.
In custody, Orane was presented to the media .The suspect admitted he was paid P80,000 for the hatchet job. But like hired assassins of this caliber he practicedÂ Â omertaÂ (Â silence ) as to Â the identity of the mastermind.
That is why, even then, we never considered the case closed. Even if the justice system nails Orena to the cross- it is like cutting the tail of the cobra, but the head of the snake that contains the venom (mastermind) will Â still be Â scot-free.Â We do not know if the suspect will qualify as “state witness” – but in doing so, Geovani knows the dark future of those who “kill and tell” in the pernicious world of the underworld.
Some P 80,000 of the original P 170,000 “bounty” Â fee has been already committed/paid to the “assets” that led to the downfall of Geovani.Â That means their sleuthing and the final nail on the coffin – the positive results of the scientific ballistic tests linking his confiscated gun to the assassin’s weapon -could put away the suspect in jail for life for murder. A murder-for hire, at that.
Of course, Geovani, through an expert lawyer’s advice, had heretofore recanted -denying his involvement in the murder, much less the blood money paid.Â That is an expected legal maneuver- for what is there to stand trial court for – if he admits all the facts attendant to the 2nd journalist’s murder in Bohol – the 136th since 1986 and the 34th under the wake of a highly democratic president in the Palace?
According to sources, he tried to muddle the case by claiming Â that the gun belonged to the late councilor-lawyer Lim -but Â withdrew the story line for reasons only the suspect and his lawyer know.
But quick as the crime “solution” has been – the whole global media press and even Malacanang itself – in condemning the Â brazen daylight murder- -are Â still watching the final resolution of the case.Â That final resolution basically means the successful prosecution and conviction of BOTH Â the gunman and the mastermind.
To nail the gunman is to solve half of the crime.
Amateur theories pointing lamely to a “love matter” for the murder due to its Valentine’s Day’s Â execution was discarded as it looked like a ploy at obfuscation by the suspects.Â The theory pointing to a disputed land case in a faraway town involving Mau seemed far fetched as the denouement of the morality play unfolded.
Four days (March 10) after the suspect’s arrest on March 6 – a grenade was exploded at the premises of the late councilor’s residence.Â It is hard not to put any link Â of that incident to the whole tragedy. We could be wrong, however.
Will Chairman Mau’s soul and his bereaved family secure justice?
The Justice System in the country is only as strong as its weakest link.
There are five pillars of justice in the country- Â the arresting (police, NBI ,etc), the prosecution arm (building the case) , the courts ( laying the Â judgement) . the correctional (prison, rehab etc) and the community ( Â accepting and rebuilding the prisoner after his term).
In fairness, the third pillar (Judiciary) – can only issue a fair judgement if the arresting officers – executed the law (related to a case) under constitutional rules, secured hard evidence and Â credible witnesses and the Prosecution Team able to translate these into damning tools to build a strong Â legal case. Thereupon, a fair judge will render the verdict of guilty or not -and the concomitant punishment.
The global and national media, nay the world, are all looking at the case as proof positive -whether Â in this Â corner of the globe – murderers of media men – can still Â be jailed Â and cannot always operate with frightening impunity.
As they do everywhere else in this country. Gentlemen, do we have a case? Nail Â him, at the very least.
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