MANILA, Philippines – A shooting incident rocked a high-end subdivision in Makati City earlier this week, which saw the death of at least two security guards.
In a phone interview with Rappler on Wednesday, September 28, Makati City police chief Edward Cutiyog said Julius Cortez, 43, driver and security guard of Pharmally executive Rose Nono Lin, allegedly killed his two fellow guards on Monday, September 26.
Lin is the corporate treasurer of Pharmally Biologicals Incorporated, allegedly a sister company of Pharmally Pharmaceutical Corporation. Pharmally was put under public scrutiny after it secured multi-billion-pesos worth of contracts under former president Rodrigo Duterte.
The shooting occurred at Lin’s house at 14 Narra Street, South Forbes Park Village, on Monday night, according to Cutiyog.
The Makati City police chief said Cortez allegedly killed his fellow security guards, Jay Ar Tomenio and Eugene Sitjar, while they were drinking brandy. When Cortez was about to eat, he discovered that he had a smaller share in the food, so he became furious and started firing at his colleagues, Cutiyog told Rappler.
Cortez told the police that before the incident he felt like he was being bullied so he became overwhelmed by emotion.
The victims, Tomenio and Sitjar, died after the shooting. Tomenio sustained a gunshot to his waist, while Sitjar was shot in the head.
According to Cutiyog, the suspect fled the area around 8 pm, while the incident was reported to them at around 9:05 pm. The Makati City police deployed a Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team to respond to the incident.
Since Monday night, the police has been monitoring the area and launched a manhunt operation against Cortez. A day after, on September 27, the police received a call from a security guard in a nearby subdivision and said that Cortez was spotted in the area.
Cutiyog said they had deployed an intelligence team and verified that Cortez was in the area. Cortez was arrested by Makati City police and SWAT team on Tuesday at around 7:30 am.
A report by the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) said the police recovered one caliber .40 firearm and two pieces of magazines loaded with 15 live ammunition from Cortez. The Makati police chief said Cortez remains in their custody.
The NCRPO said the police will file complaints for two counts of murder, illegal possession of firearms, and theft against Cortez. The police have yet to explain why Cortez will also face a theft complaint.
Coincidentally, Michael Yang, Duterte’s former economic adviser, lives near where the incident happened. He lives across 19 Narra street, near Lin’s residence, according to a report by The Philippine Star.
Pharmally is linked to Yang’s network through one of its owners, Singaporean Huang Tzu Yen. During Senate probe into Pharmally, Senator Risa Hontiveros described Lin as the key person who could help senators connect Pharmally with the Philippine Full Win Group of Companies Inc. chaired by Yang. – Rappler.com