DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / Dec. 30, 2007) – Police have arrested one of two men linked to the murder of a Filipino broadcaster in the southern port city of Davao.
Police said Oliver Antoc, 31, was nabbed on Friday night in Davao City by members of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group while buying a roast chicken for dinner. They also seized a .45-caliber pistol from Antoc.
Two witnesses in the killing of Ferdinand Lintuan also pointed to Antoc as the gunman who shot the journalist inside his car on December 24.
It said it would file criminal charges against Antoc based on testimonies of the witnesses. It was unknown whether Antoc is a member of the Davao Death Squad or who ordered the killing of the journalist.
Two motorcycle gunmen killed Ferdinand Lintuan as he was driving his car.
Lintuan’s killing was previously blamed on the vigilante group called the Davao Death Squad, which is believed behind hundreds of extra-judicial killings the past years in Davao City.
Most of its victims were suspected criminals and thieves, but relatives and families of those killed have accused policemen as behind the Davao Death Squad.
Police gave no details about its investigation into the killing, but Lintuan's murder was not the first in Davao City. Several journalists had been murdered in the past in Davao and among them were Ed Palomares, Cezar Magalang, Narciso Balani, Rogie Zagado in 1987 and Juan Pala Jr., in 2003.
Five journalists had been killed and two others wounded in separate attacks in the Philippines since early this year, according to the National Union of Journalists.
The Philippines is branded as one of the most dangerous place for journalists because of unresolved killings. Dozens of journalists were killed the past years and most of the cases remain unresolved.
More than 900 people, among them political activists, have been killed and hundreds are still missing since President Gloria Arroyo took office in 2001, according to the United Methodist News Service. (Mindanao Examiner)