Whistle-blower may lose govt protection
The camp of Vice President Jejomar Binay on Wednesday urged the Department of Justice to immediately look into the possible involvement of Ernesto Mercado in allegedly hiding the suspects in the Gerry Ortega murder case.
“If indeed true, as reported by Philippine National Police, Mr. Mercado should be dropped from the Witness Protection Program and face the consequences of his illicit act,” Binay spokesperson Rico Quicho said.
Quicho said the Justice Department must investigate former Makati Vice Mayor Mercado amid reports on his alleged involvement in hiding the Reyes brothers, primary suspects in the killing of Ortega, an environmentalist and broadcaster.
Former Palawan Gov. Joel Reyes and his brother Coron ex-Mayor Mario Reyes were arrested by authorities in Thailand and deported to the Philippines for violating immigration laws.
A police report revealed that the Reyes brothers’ call data and short message service records included the name of Mercado.
The Reyes brothers had been calling their associates, one of which was Mercado, while hiding in Thailand, according to Quicho.
Mercado accused Binay, a presidential aspirant, of pocketing kickbacks from the Makati City Hall Building II.
Binay denied the charges, saying Mercado was part of his opponents’ demolition team.