April 8, self-professed hitman for the alleged Davao Death Squad (DDS) ex-police officer Arturo “Arthur” Lascañas was able to quietly board a plane headed to Singapore.
In a report by the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Lascañas said that he was afraid that a lawsuit would be filed against him and he would be arrested. He also claimed that his life would be in danger once he returns to the Philippines.
This Monday, however, Senator Panfilo Lacson questioned how Lascañas was able to afford such a luxury.
In a report by GMA News, Lacson said through text message that Lascañas’ family had left for Singapore prior to his testimony at the Senate, which connected President Rodrigo Duterte to the extrajudicial killings in Davao City.
“That could be his personal reason for leaving. It may be worth to find out who spent for his and his family’s trips and accommodations in Singapore which is an expensive place to stay,” Lacson said.
“Contrary to reports that he left quietly, I don’t see that since he allowed himself to be accompanied by a news reporter,” he added.
When asked who Lacson thinks sponsored the ex-policeman’s trip, the Senator said: “Most likely those who sponsored his retraction and his tri-media interviews in an apparent effort to bring down President Duterte.”
Lascañas claimed that the DDS does exist and that he along with others were involved in the killings of almost 200 people. According to him, the DDS hitmen were paid around P100,000 by former Mayor Duterte.
One of the victims of this so-called death squad was radio broadcaster Jun Pala.
However last February, Lascañas completely changed his testimony concerning the supposed DDS. He was represented by lawyers from the Free Legal and Assistance Group along with Senator Antonio Trillanes IV during the press conference.
Lascañas showed a plane ticket which indicated that he would return on April 22, according to Bureau of Immigration spokesperson Antonette Mangrobang.
Lacson mentioned that Lascañas’ decision to go to Singapore will be brought up in a full Senate committee report once Congress resumes session this May 2.
Lacson is the current chairman of the Senate public order committee – in charge of the hearings of Lascañas’ accusations against the President.
Last March, Lacson claimed that Lascañas’ testimony was intended to “destabilize” the Duterte administration.
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