The camp of Board Member Niño Rey Boniel is now verifying a report which indicated that Mayor Gisela Boniel is alive and in Dubai, while several witnesses have previously pointed out that she was shot dead mid-sea and dropped in waters off Lapu-Lapu City on June 7.
One of Niño’s lawyers Atty. Gerry Carillo told the Chronicle on Friday of the possibility that the still unverified information which had surfaced recently will be stated in their counter-affidavit.
“Mao na ang information na among nadawat. In fact, ato nang isaysay sa atong counter-affidavit. Pero amoa pa nang gi-verify,” said Carillo.
However, the lawyer did not specify the report’s source while its veracity is still being determined.
The purported development was first bared by Carillo through dyLA Cebu on Thursday.
He told the radio station that they are not discounting the possibility that the mayor left the country through “backdoor” means which would allow her to travel abroad without a trace.
“Dunay report nga backdoor siya mi-agi, from Indonesia to Malaysia, to Dubai. She took the backdoor exit,” he said in an interview with station dyLA.
Meanwhile, search and retrieval operations for Gisela’s body continued earlier today in waters off Olango and Caubian Islands in Lapu-Lapu City.
Authorities led by police Chief Insp. Jacinto Mandal have already started using equipment from the Philippine Navy such as an unmanned underwater robot and sonar site scanner but so far, to no avail.
However, Mandal noted that the search will continue while the Police Regional Office-7 under Chief Supt. Noli Talino has not ordered its suspension.
Mandal also expressed optimism that they will find the remains of Gisela who is presumed dead.
“We should not lose hope,” Mandal said. “There has been no order from the regional director to terminate our search and retrieval operations, we will continue.”
The police officer had also previously bared that divers will likely make their way to Camotes Islands as the body may have been swept away by strong undercurrents.
“We are tracing a specific grid coordinate. And we are following the flow of the current,” said Mandal.
Police have been focusing their search in waters off Lapu-Lapu City after Riolito Boniel, who claimed to be the boatman during the incident, told authorities that the mayor’s body was dumped in the area.
Riolito had also pinpointed Niño as the mastermind in the killing of Gisela while Randel Lupas, driver and regular employee of the local government unit of Bien Unido, supported the accusation.
Niño, Riolito and Lupas have been charged with parracide in relation to the mayor’s killing.(Rey Tutas)