A Las Piñas City Regional Trial Court on Friday issued a warrant of arrest against former Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) chief Gerald Bantag and four others over the killing of broadcast journalist Percy Lapid in October.
The Las Piñas RTC Branch 254 also ordered the arrest of former BuCor deputy officer Ricardo Zulueta, Israel Dimaculangan, Edmon Dimaculangan, and a certain Orlando.
The warrant is signed by Presiding Judge Harold Huliganga and is for the non-bailable charge of murder.
GMA News Online has sought comment from the camps of Bantag and Zulueta but has yet to receive a reply as of posting time.
The two had been linked to the killing of Lapid and alleged middleman Jun Villamor as alleged masterminds.
Meanwhile, confessed gunman Joel Escorial identified the Dimaculangan brothers and Orlando as his accomplices.
The issuance of the arrest warrant came after the Muntinlupa Regional Trial Court Branch 206 issued an arrest warrant against Bantag and Zulueta for the killing of Villamor.
Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla advised Bantag to surrender and "face the music" after the Muntinlupa Court issued the warrant.
Bantag and Zulueta were indicted by Department of Justice prosecutors for two counts of murder in March.
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.” —NB, GMA Integrated News