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2 “salvaged”, 1 killed in biz rivalry in 7 days

MERIDA, LEYTE – A suspected salvage victim was found early morning this Monday at the highway along Sitio Looc, Brgy. Libas, this town. This is the second salvage victim found hereabouts, the first one in Bgry. Liloan, Ormoc City last July 1. 

SPO2 Joel C. Alcober of the Merida police station said they recovered the body at around 5:40 AM, at an isolated portion of the highway. When found, the victim was facing the ground, with his hands tied at the back with a yellow nylon rope. He was only clad in white shorts with black and red lining but they recovered a black sleeveless T-shirt a few meters away, with faded green markings that read “Noel Aseo” and “Lagpak Boys”.

The police investigator said the body was bullet-ridden that they did not bother to count his gunshot wounds. “It was too many, we did not bother to count it”, he said in the vernacular. He added they surmise the victim was shot close range because when they turned him over, all the wounds were “through and through”. 

However, they only discovered one slug nearby, leading them to believe that the victim could have been killed in another area and the shots fired were just to finish him off. Residents of houses nearby told the police that they heard gunshots rang out at around 2:00 AM.

The body, he added, was riddled also with tattoos. The distinctive marks included the names “Arturo Antido” at the victim’s back, “Oscar” on his left shoulder and “Nolasco” on his right breast under the face of Jesus.  The victim is around 5”9, brown complexioned and between 30 to 40 years old.

While they are still trying to ascertain the identity of the victim, Alcober said he received information that he could be a resident of Mabini district in Ormoc City, around 30 minutes away. The district is notorious for drugs.

Last July 1, another bullet-riddled body of a still unidentified victim was found at Brgy. Lilo-an. Like the latest victim, residents nearby where the body was found said they heard shots rang out at around 2:00 AM.

The body also had tattoos. The most distinctive were the marks “Filipinas” on the outer side of his right thigh and “BSL 22” at his left leg. “BSL” stands for Batang Samar Leyte, a regional prison gang and the number beside usually indicate their detention cell numbers. The victim was given a pauper’s burial after nobody came to claim his body. He remains unidentified as of press time.

On the other hand, an itinerant vendor from Tacloban City who sharpens knives and saws for a living was shot dead on Saturday, July 6, at around 1:30 PM in this town.

SPO2 Alcover said the killing happened just a walk away from were the recent salvage victim was found.

The shooting victim was identified as one Lito Diemos y Reponte, 40, a resident of Brgy. 61, Sagkahan, Tacloban City. Police identified him from his driver’s license.

The victim, who was riding his motorcycle, was shot by men on two motorcycles who tailed him from the town proper.

The victim’s body was claimed by his wife and son by evening. Text messages on the victim’s cellphone have already given the police leads to the identity of the killers, Alcover added. Business rivalry is the suspected motive, he added.

Police recovered all the victim’s things, four pieces empty shells of a Cal. 45, one still unfired bullet and a slug that got lodged in his backpack. By JT delos Angeles, LMJ and Paul Libres

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