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P1M reward offered for information on TV host's killers

April 29, 2008 10:16am
MANILA , Philippines - A P1 million reward was offered on Tuesday for information that would lead to the arrest of the suspects in the killing of a television host in Pampanga over the weekend.

In a press statement, television station UNTV-37 said it is offering the reward to effect the immediate arrest of one of its hosts Marcos Mataro's killers.

"UNTV 37 has offered a P1-M reward for the speedy arrest of the killers of Marcos Mataro, one of the hosts of D’ X-Man program," UNTV stated.

Broadcaster Jay Sonza, UNTV station manager, said that they were able to raise the said reward money through donations from sponsors, sympathizers and friends of the slain anchorman.

Mataro was a 39-year-old religious worker of the Iglesia ng Diyos Kay Kristo Hesus Church, led by controversial spiritual leader and Ang Dating Daan host Eliseo Soriano.

Mataro was shot six times to his forehead, eyes, neck, and chest, which led to his instantaneous death. Spent shells from a 9mm pistol were recovered from the crime scene.

Initial police investigation showed that the victim was waiting for a Manila-bound passenger bus along the San Simon Exit in San Simon, Pampanga when the two armed assailants, riding a motorcycle in tandem, attacked him at around 10:30 a.m. Sunday.

The suspected gunmen abandoned their motorcycle with plate number DW-4524 and boarded a bus headed for San Fernando City, also in Pampanga.

Police are zeroing in on the angle that the killing could be connected to the victim’s leaving the Felix Manalo-founded Iglesia ni Cristo Church and his transferring to Soriano’s group.

After serving as its minister, Mataro, a New Era University graduate, left the INC and hosted D’ X-Man, a television program that features former INC members exposing alleged anomalies surrounding one of the biggest religious groups in the Philippines.

As of posting time, a follow-up investigation continues even as the UNTV appealed to National Police Chief Director Gen. Avelino Razon and Chief Director Errol Pan of the Central Luzon police to expedite the resolution of the case. - Mark Merueñas, GMANews.TV
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