(UPDATED 2:00 p.m.) The motorized banca believed to have been used by the suspects in the killing of Bien Unido Mayor Gisela Boniel to dump her body at sea was found in an island-barangay of the town on Friday morning, said the municipal police chief.
According to Insp. Librado Bigcas, the boat was bloodied and emitted foul odor based on reports of police who examined it after receiving reports that the small sea craft was moored to the shore in Barangay Malingin, Bien Unido, some 5 kilometers away from the town center.
“Matod sa taw na gipada nato didto, positive na dunay daghang dugo,” said Bigcas during DYRD’s “Tagbilaran by Night” program on Friday.
The banca is owned by the father of Lobo Boniel who police tagged as a person of interest in relation to the kidnapping and murder of Gisela, added Bigcas.
Authorities said that Lobo was the last to use the banca and had told his father that someone wanted to rent it.
Lobo is an employee of the Bien Unido Municipal Hall, said Bigcas.
For his part, SPO1 Fernando Item of the Bien Unido police station noted this morning that it is possible that the suspects cleaned and wiped the blood off the boat before returning it.
The sea craft which could seat three to four persons also matched the description given by Riolito Boniel, the cousin of the crime’s prime suspect Provincial Board Member Rey Boniel, who is also in police custody.
“Matud sa storya ni Etad [Riolito], papa ni Lobo ang tag-iya sa banca,” Bigcas said.
The police chief also noted that Lobo is likely to be related to the board member but this has yet to be confirmed.
The police have also not concluded on whether the boat was indeed used by the suspects and that the blood belonged to Gisela.
Meanwhile, Lobo is believed to have fled Bien Unido.
“Usa sa atong gi imbestigahan kung unsa iyang [Lobo] partisipasyon agtong time na nahitabo ang krimen, basin sad,” said Bigcas. “Dili sad nato mawala na basin dunay siyay partisipasyon mao na gamit to siya na banka.”
According to Bigcas, Lobo is native of Barangay Malingin but had been living with his family in Barangay Poblacion, Bien Unido.
Authorities have already taken the boat to the Bien Unido port where it is bieng guarded by policemen.
The Bohol Provincial Police Office (BPPO) Provincial Intelligence Branch is expected to conduct a follow-up investigation on the recent development today, said Bigcas.
BPPO director Sr. Supt. Felipe Natividad has also already been notified on the sighting of the boat which was allegedly used by the suspects, he added.
Earlier, Riolito told media that Gisela was bound by a net together with two rocks approximately weighing 30 kilos before she was thrown into waters off Olango Island, Lapu-Lapu City on Wednesday dawn. (with reports from Allen Doydora and Rey Tutas)