MANILA, Philippines – The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) in Davao Region has revealed that Filipino fighter Ale Cali received death threats before he was gunned down by a still unknown assailant.
In an interview with Sun Star Davao, NBI-Davao regional director Dante Gierran confirmed that Cali appeared at their office last week and reported that he had been receiving death threats.
“We really could not determine the relevance of the death threats he allegedly received. It can be work-related or personal grudge," he said in Filipino.
The 25-year-old fighter was gunned down by an unidentified assailant in Ulas, Davao City on Sunday morning, August 16.
According to an eyewitness account, Cali was alighting from his vehicle when he was approached by the suspect, who wore a helmet.
The guman shot Cali 3 times in the head before fleeing towards the Toril area of Davao City on a Honda Wave motorcycle with a temporary plate number.
Police have yet to determine the motive behind the crime, but an informant told Rappler of a possible "jealousy" angle, from an irate husband of one of Cali’s gym clients.
Cali worked as an instructor at the Metro Lifestyle Fitness Center, which is located at F. Torres Street in Emilio Jacinto Extension, Davao City.
"We cannot judge any person with these kind of allegations without evidences," Gierran said regarding the allegation. “There is still a need to follow the due process of the law. We can subpoena those people possibly involved in the issue.”
Gierran stressed that NBI-Davao Region and the Davao City Police Office are exerting all efforts to resolve the murder case.
"It's better for both DCPO and NBI to work together for a better synergy. But there is no need for a special task group since we have coordination,” he said.
Cali (5-3) had a stellar run under the Pacific Xtreme Combat (PXC) banner, where he captured the promotion’s flyweight title against Guamanian stalwart Jesse Taitano via a third-round technical knockout in February 2012. Nine months later, he successfully defended the belt with a third-round stoppage of compatriot Erwin Tagle. (READ: PXC mourns Ale Cali’s tragic passing)
The 5-foot-5 Davao City native relinquished the 125-pound division’s top prize to Louis Smolka in November 2013 by way of first-round technical knockout.
Cali was last seen in action when he was submitted by Ernesto Montilla Jr with a first-round armbar in March 2014.
"The Young Gun" was slated to have his comeback bout as part of PXC’s fight card in November.
Cali’s remains were interred on Monday, August 17, in Santa Cruz, Davao del Sur. – Rappler.com