DARAGA, Albay — Mayor Carlwyn Baldo on Thursday denied the accusations tagging him as the mastermind in the killing of Ako Bicol Party List Rep. Rodel Batocabe and his security escort, Senior Police Officer 2 Orlando Diaz.
“I am innocent of any accusations against me – I did not order the killing of Cong. Batocabe and his security escort,” Baldo said in a press conference.
In a prepared statement he read at his office, Baldo said: “I assert my innocence, Let us not forget that while I am being used as a convenient scapegoat, those who are truly responsible for the crime remain free and blameless.”
He further said, “I am already being persecuted in the courts of public opinion.”
Baldo said he has yet to receive the formal complaint against him, noting that he will “refrain from further discussing this matter until we have properly and formally received our copy of the complaint”.
The Philippine National Police (PNP) Special Investigation Task Group (SITG), led by the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG), has filed on Thursday morning double murder and six counts of frustrated murder cases against Baldo and six other suspects at the Albay Provincial Prosecutors Office.
PNP chief Director General Oscar Albayalde, in a press conference, said the PNP achieved a major breakthrough in the investigation of the case as he tagged Baldo as the alleged mastermind in the killing of the lawmaker.
Albayalde said the assassination plot was hatched on Aug. 18, when Batocabe announced in public his bid for the mayoral post of Daraga.