DOJ Directs Filing of Murder Charge Against Bangued Mayor Ryan Luna

25 April 2013

In a Department of Justice (DOJ) Resolution promulgated yesterday, April 24, granting the petition for review flied by Edwin Crisologo, Sr., whose wife was gunned down inside  an elementary classroom at the Holy Spirit Academy in Bangued, Abra by a certain Totoy Buyao during the 14 May 2009 elections, Undersecretary Francisco F. Baraan III found probable cause to include Mayor Ryan Luna as additional accused in the murder case now pending with the RTC, Branch 2, Bangued, Abra (Criminal Case No. 2009-011).

Earlier, a complaint for murder was filed against Lenin Benwaren,  Pedro Benwaren, Tony Benwaren, Henry Lee Tan, Nober Calubing and Jonathan Libuen, pursuant to which an information for murder was filed against them in the said Regional Trial Court, where trial is ongoing.

The Resolution states that Luna was seen  signaling to the gunman by pointing to the victim, Brenda Crisologo, after which Luna left the classroom and the gunman later shot her. It also enumerates several circumstances culled from earlier testimonies showing that Luna was not merely, but actively, present at the scene of the shooting, indicating  his conspiracy with the other accused. Among other findings, the Resolution states that it was Ryan Luna who brought in his black pick- up with plate no. CHE 618 Lenin Benwaren, Henry Lee Tan and the gunman (Totoy Buyao) to the scene of the incident.

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