MANILA, Philippines – The nine police officers involved in the killing of four military men in Jolo, Sulu in June will face the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) this week, Philippine National Police chief General Archie Gamboa said Monday.
Gamboa said the policemen will meet with the NBI for three days starting Monday for the investigation into the circumstances that led to the death of the soldiers.
The PNP chief also confirmed reports that only four out of nine cops had fired their guns during the incident that took place on June 29.
The NBI Forensic for Investigation Services earlier said that four of the nine policemen tagged in the killing tested positive for gunpowder nitrates following paraffin tests.
“They are also hoping na matapos din agad ang investigation kasi sabi nila kung walang kasalanan yung iba. Yung iba maiiwan pero yung walang kasalanan sana makabalik na sila sa kanila. But, of course, natural ito dahil may mga pamilya din sila doon sa Jolo na naiwan,” Gamboa said.
Meanwhile, Gamboa said that the Board of Inquiry, whose members consist of police and military officers, is still reviewing the tactics and protocols of the PNP and Armed Forces of the Philippines to see if these need to be improved and to prevent the incident from happening again.
“Of course ang magiging adjustment kung coordination ang problema is not only with the PNP. This will be a joint evaluation, joint resolution on how to go about yung coordination… Local coordination really is the secret para hindi na magkaroon ng mga insidente kagaya ng Jolo,” he said,
Last June 29, four soldiers were killed after they were accosted by local police officers.
The Philippine Army said the four men, who were wearing civilian clothes, were on an official mission when they were spotted by police officers on patrol.
When questioned by cops, the four men allegedly introduced themselves as members of the AFP. They were then asked to proceed to the Jolo Municipal Police Station for verification.
But initial police report said the soldiers attempted to escape prompting police to give chase. When the men got off their vehicle, they allegedly pointed their firearms at the police, which prompted the cops to fire at them, resulting in their death.
The NBI earlier said its investigation is ongoing and is already in possession of video footage of the incident. It has also gathered testimonies from witnesses, including two soldiers who served as sweepers when the shooting incident took place.
The caps tagged in the killing have since been placed under restrictive custody following the incident. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Lea Ylagan)
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