Bato: Prime suspect in Camilon case released from Senate detention

Police Major Allan de Castro, the prime suspect in the disappearance of beauty pageant contestant Catherine Camilon, has been released from Senate detention, according to Senator Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa.

The development came two days after De Castro was cited in contempt by the Senate committee on public order and dangerous drugs, which is chaired by Dela Rosa, for allegedly lying about his reported relationship with Camilon.

“Pinakawalan ko dahil bakasyon ang Senado ng more than one month. Walang magaganap na hearing. Well, bakasyon, naka-break ang Senado. So, hindi ko kinakailangan presensya niya. Pagbalik ng Senado, kung magkakaroon pa kami ng hearing, ipapatawag natin ulit siya,” Dela Rosa told reporters in a phone interview.

“‘Yun naman for humanitarian reason na rin,” he added.

[I released him because the Senate will be on vacation for more than a month. There will be no hearing, the Senate will be on vacation. So, I won’t need his presence. If there will be another hearing, then I will call him again. That’s also for humanitarian reasons.]

According to Dela Rosa, he consulted with Senator Robin Padilla, who made the motion to cite De Castro in contempt, and agreed that the police officer involved in Camilon’s case should be released while the Senate is not in session.

Dela Rosa also shared that he had a conversation with De Castro and the latter became emotional.

“Umiiyak nga na hindi daw talaga niya girlfriend at wala daw silang relasyon. So ano bang klaseng relasyon meron kayo kung ikaw ay inaakusa ng karamihan na girlfriend. Iyak lang siya at sabi niya hindi niya girlfriend,” said Dela Rosa, a former chief of the Philippine National Police.

[He kept on crying and insisted they didn’t have any relationship. I asked what kind of relationship they had and he just cried and insisted (Catherine’s) not his girlfriend.]

Although De Castro shared his emotions with Dela Rosa, the lawmaker said that he was not convinced.

‘Missing person’

On October 16 last year, Camilon’s sister Chin-chin took to social media to ask netizens for help in locating her sister. Five days after her social media post, Camilon was declared a “missing person” by the police.

Authorities said a close friend of Camilon reached out to Chin-Chin and told her of the alleged relationship between the beauty queen and De Castro.

De Castro was reportedly the person Camilon was supposed to meet on the day of her disappearance, which the police office has denied.

De Castro also allegedly gave her the vehicle she was seen in when she left her house.

Based on CCTV footage captured on October 12, Camilon’s car was seen passing some towns in Batangas. Police said she did not appear to be alone.

Witnesses then came forward, saying they saw Camilon bloodied while being transferred from her car to another vehicle on October 12. The witnesses also said they saw Jeffrey Magpantay in the area. Magpantay is said to be the driver-bodyguard of De Castro.

The hair and blood recovered from the vehicle, which was later located by the police, matched the DNA profile of Camilon’s parents.

Kidnapping and serious illegal detention complaints have been filed against De Castro, Magpantay, and two John Does. — RSJ, GMA Integrated News

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