Murder raps filed vs. Bantag, Zulueta over Percy Lapid slay — DOJ
The Department of Justice (DOJ) on Wednesday confirmed that murder charges have been filed against suspended Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) chief Gerald Bantag and former deputy security officer Ricardo Zulueta over the killing of broadcaster Percy Lapid and alleged middleman Jun Villamor.
In a message to reporters, Justice spokesperson Mico Clavano said the charge for the killing of Lapid was filed before the Las Piñas Regional Trial Court on March 14, Tuesday, while the charge for the killing of Villamor was filed on March 13 before the Muntinlupa Regional Trial Court.
The DOJ has indicted Bantag, former deputy security officer Ricardo Zulueta, and others over the killing of Lapid and Villamor. The prosecutors said that the death of Villamor was intertwined with the death of Lapid and that it was used to cover up Lapid’s death.
In a press statement, the DOJ said "sufficient circumstantial evidence has been presented to establish that he masterminded the assassination" of Lapid, whose real name is Percival Mabasa.
Sought for comment, Bantag’s camp said they will file the necessary pleadings while Zulueta’s camp said they “expected” the indictment.
Lapid was shot dead in Las Piñas City on October 3, 2022, while Villamor died at the New Bilibid Prison on October 18. An autopsy by forensic pathologist Dr. Raquel Fortun showed the remains of Villamor to have a “history of asphyxia by plastic bag suffocation.” —VAL, GMA Integrated News