The motive for the killing was allegedly the victim's shift of loyalty to the mayor's political opponent. Bicol Standard

Ex-Camarines Sur mayor arrested for murder
Melissa Basmayor (philstar.com) - October 7, 2017 - 9:32am

NAGA CITY, Philippines (Bicol Standard) — Former Caramoan town mayor Marilyn Co, who is facing a criminal charge for the murder of Miguel Antonio Francia, will remain at the custody of the National Bureau of Investigation Naga City District Office pending trial after she voluntarily surrendered the other day.

Meantime, co-accused Ramil Arañas, a former cop who faces the same charge, is now detained at the BJMP Tigaon District Jail.

This case stemmed from the incident on May 15, 2001, when Miguel Antonio Francia was shot dead in front of his house in Caramoan, Camarines Sur by Sgt. Roberto Reyes, a member of the Philippine Army.

Jocelyn Francia, Miguel’s widow, filed a complaint for murder against Reyes and John Does.

Mayor Marilyn H. Co and Wilson C. Co, the mayor’s late husband, were included as principals by induction.

The motive for the killing was allegedly Miguel’s shift of loyalty to Mayor Co’s political opponent.

Reyes and the John Does in the complaint were allegedly the mayor's bodyguards.

While Miguel was at the Caramoan Municipal Hospital, Reyes, SPO2 Ramil Arañas, and a John Doe allegedly entered the Francias’ house against Jocelyn’s will.

They searched for papers and other effects, and caused chaos and disarray in the house. Accordingly, Jocelyn also filed a complaint for Violation of Domicile against Reyes, Arañas, and John Doe.

The accused alleged that Miguel was drunk and unruly, and indiscriminately fired his 9 mm pistol. Reyes, who was at the vicinity, accosted Miguel and fired a warning shot. However, Miguel pointed his pistol at Reyes.

Reyes was forced to shoot Miguel who was hit at his right thigh. He and his companions brought Miguel to the Caramoan Municipal Hospital where he died due to loss of blood.

On Sept. 22, 2017, Presiding Judge Ma. Angela Acompañado-Arroyo of Regional Trial Court Branch 58 in San Jose, Camarines Sur, issued an order for the arrest of Marilyn Co and Ramil Arañas.

No bail was recommended for the temporary release of Co and Arañas.

***

Melissa Basmayor is the editor-in-chief of the Bicol Standard, a regional partner of Philstar.com.

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