Press Release
September 2, 2015

Pimentel condemns killing of judge, seeks swift police action

Senator Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III today expressed outrage over the senseless, broad-daylight murder of Judge Erwin Alaba of RTC Branch 91 in Baler, Aurora yesterday, asking authorities to give priority in solving the crime immediately.

Pimentel, chairman of the Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights, said the judiciary has no resources to combat violence against its members that it has to depend on the police and other law enforcement agencies to bring to justice the killer of Alaba and the "brains" behind the killing.

A lone gunman on a motorcycle waited and shot to death Alaba six times near his court, but Pimentel said the impunity that characterized the execution of Alaba raised suspicion that there must be a "mastermind" behind the crime.

Pimentel enjoined investigators to act swiftly and look into all possible angles why a well-loved judge would be wasted gangland style right before the door steps of his court where he was about to hear cases pending before his dockets.

"I offer my sincerest condolences to the family of the late Judge Alaba," said Pimentel as he requested authorities to look after the wife of the fallen judge who was also hit but survived the attack. "She should be protected as witness."

Pimentel added that the first step to justice is solving the crime by identifying the suspect and arresting him.

He said the brutal killing last year of Zamboanga City Judge Reynerio Estacio Jr., who had handled many controversial cases involving politicians, suspected Abu Sayyaf bandits and policemen, is still begging for an answer.

Pimentel said arresting the killers is not enough, as he enjoined police investigators to dig deeper to catch the "brains" behind the savage attack against members of the judiciary to stop the violence and strengthen public confidence on the justice system.

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