Rape, homicide charges vs 11 accused in Dacera’s death dismissed

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The Makati Prosecutor’s Office has dismissed the charges of rape and homicide against 11 men implicated in the death of flight attendant Christine Dacera on January 1.

In a 19-page resolution dated April 23, 2021, Assistant City Prosecutor Joan Bolina-Santillan said the “evidence presented are insufficient to engender a well-founded belief that rape, homicide or rape with homicide has been committed.”

The resolution said the rape and homicide charges against John Pascual Dela Serna III, Romel Galido, John Paul Halili, Gregorio Angelo De Guzman, Jezreel Rapinan, Alain D. Chen, Mark Anthony Rosales, Reymar Englis, Louie Delima, Jamyr Cunanan, and Eduard Pangilinan are “dismissed for lack of probable cause”.

Deputy City Prosecutor Henry Salazar and City Prosecutor Dindo Venturaza approved the resolution.

The preliminary investigation ended on February 18.

In March, criminal charges other than rape and homicide were filed by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) against the men who were with the 23-year-old Dacera at the City Garden Grand Hotel.

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) filed charges of violation of Republic Act 9165, or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, against Rosales for allegedly bringing party drugs and, along with Galido, for delivering and giving away the illegal substance.

Also charged for reckless imprudence resulting in homicide were Dela Serna III, Rapinan, Chen, and Delima for neglecting Dacera.

NBI findings, however, showed no proof of abrasions in the victim’s genitalia, as earlier claimed by forensic experts.

The Philippine Airlines flight attendant was found unconscious in a bathtub, hours after a party.

She was declared dead on arrival at the Makati Medical Center.

Initial reports indicated she was raped but the police failed to substantiate the claims.

Toxicology examinations showed the presence of Diltiazem, a medicine for high blood pressure.

The NBI disputed the police’s conclusion that the victim’s urinary bladder was empty and said that in fact, its forensic team was able to extract 130 milliliters of urine, but no abrasion was found in her labia majora.

Charges of perjury were also recommended against Galido, Dela Serna, and Darwin Macalla for allegedly providing false testimonies; and obstruction of justice against Rosales, Galido, Dela Serna, De Guzman, Rapinan, Chen, Englis, Macalla, and lawyer Neptali Maroto for allegedly giving false or fabricated information to mislead or prevent the law enforcement agencies from apprehending the offenders.

Criminal charges for falsification of official document by a public officer were slapped against investigator Maj. Michael Nick Sarmiento.

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