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Republic of the Philippines NATIONAL PROSECUTORS OFFICE Iloilo City Prosecutors Office Iloilo Supermarket, Mabini Street, Iloilo

City

PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINES, Complainant, -versusFor: Murder

FAUSTO DE LEON, Respondent. X-----------------------------------------------x

COUNTER-AFFIDAVIT

I, FAUSTO DE LEON, Filipino and of legal age, after having been sworn to in accordance with law, do hereby state that:

1. I am executing this Counter-Affidavit as a reply and comment to the Complaint Affidavit of ALYS ESCOBAR and Affidavit of Witnesses, PETER GAHOD and JESSIE TORRES, who are under investigation by this Honorable Office in connection with the death of RENE ESCOBAR after being sideswiped by the Toyota Hilux with plate number ABC 678 on January 30, 2012.

2. I deny the truth of the allegations in the complaint, the truth being that: a. My wife and I spent our Sunday week-end with my wifes family at the municipality of San Joaquin. We stayed there overnight to attend to my sick mother-in-law and to deliver the familys weekly grocery supply. b. On the following day, 30 January 2012, we left very early in the morning for Iloilo City because my wife had to report to her office at 8:00 oclock in the morning and I had to fetch our daughter who stayed at my parents house in La Paz and drop her in school. c. On our way back to Iloilo City, we stopped and parked by the highway of Tigbauan to buy fresh fruits from our suki Aling Lucing. It has been my wifes practice to drop by at our suki in order buy some fresh fruits before we heed our way back to Iloilo City everytime we visit her relatives in Tigbauan. d. While approaching the Brgy. Purak Bridge, Tigbauan, something went wrong with the steering wheel of the Toyota Hilux I was driving and it went out of control. It was already too late when I applied the brakes, the vehicle sideswiped the victim.

3. I am executing this Counter Affidavit with the help of my lawyer in order to clarify the circumstances that will reasonably support my contention that there was no intention on my part to cause the untimely death of the victim. There was no treachery and premeditation surrounding the incident, it was pure accident and I would never intend to do such grievous act even if we had disagreement and altercations with the victim in the past. 3.a. THE INCIDENT HAPPENED IN THE PRESENCE OF THE VICTIMS WIFE AND OF TWO OTHER WITNESSES. When the accident happened, the victim was jogging along the highway of Tigbauan together with his wife and two other friends. Granting for the sake of argument alone that there was premeditation and it was the intention of the respondent to execute the threat he uttered during an altercation that happened almost a year ago in Smallville, Iloilo City, it would seem preposterous to do it in the presence of the victims wife and in open view of the two other eyewitnesses. I could have been done it in a place where there could be no one so that I can easily escape from any liability that will arise from the act. Being acquainted to each other, the respondent could easily be identified by the witnesses. Killing the victim using the respondents own vehicle would therefore violate common reason. The victim and his wife are aware that the respondent drives a white Toyota Hilux

3.b. THE RESPONDENT WAS NOT AWARE THAT THE VICTIM WAS RENE ESCOBAR. Another important reason, which would weaken the theory of the complainant, is that the respondent was not aware that the victim was RENE ESCOBAR until the incident was reported to the nearest police station. After the respondent bought fruits from their suki, they immediately drove back to Iloilo City traveling at around 80 km/hr, They were able to maintain this speed because there was no traffic on that part of the highway. While approaching the Brgy. Purak Bridge, the respondent actually noticed 4 persons jogging on the Iloilo City bound side of the highway, moving in the direction to where the vehicle was also heeding. In this arrangement, the respondent had only a clear view of the backs of the four joggers. He had no idea that these 4 persons were RENE ESCOBAR, ALYS ESCOBAR, PETER GAHOD and JESSIE TORRES. At these point the respondent noticed that something was wrong with the steering wheel. He could not anymore maneuver the vehicle and it was already too late when he applied the brake, he already sideswiped the victim who caused the victim to be thrown away landing on his head on the very hard concrete of the bridge.

3.c. THE CAUSE OF DEATH WAS DUE TO INTERNAL HEMORRHAGE 4. After the Toyota Hilux hit the victim, he was thrown to the side of the concrete bridge. It is normal that in vehicular accident, the victims gets thrown away or loses his balance and fall. However it was coincidental that the victim hit his head to the very hard concrete of the bridge. As shown by the medical record, the death of the victim was not caused by the impact caused by the vehicle but due to internal hemorrhage suffered by the victim after the latter hit his head on the concrete pavement of the bridge. This further supports the theory of the respondent that it was not his intention to kill the victim.

RESPONDENT SURRENDERED IMMEDIATELY 5. The respondent surrendered immediately to the Tigbauan Police Station after the incident. This is the nearest police station from where the incident was committed. The respondent could have gone into hiding from the claws of the law if it were his intention to commit such grievous offense with evident premeditation. Section 55 of R.A. 4136 requires that vehicular accident should be reported to the nearest officer of the law. In compliance to this provision of the law, and doing what the respondent and his wife thought was the right thing to do, reported the incident to the nearest police station free of guilt. CONCLUSION All in all, the respondent believed that the circumstances surrounding the incident bereft with merit for the filing of a murder case for lack of treachery and evident premeditation. I am executing this Counter Affidavit for the purpose of attesting to the truth I am executing this Counter-Affidavit for the purpose o f a t t e s t i n g t o t h e truth of the foregoing statements, to inform the proper authorities of the above facts N WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this 8th day of March, 2 010 at Davao City, Philippines. PEDRO C. CARGO Affiant SUBSCRIBED AND SWORN TO before me this 8th day of March, 2010 in Davao C ity, Philippines. ROXAN G. APOSTOL Prosecutor I CERTIFICATION This is to certify that I have personally examined the herein affiant an d that I am satisfied that he voluntarily executed and understood his statements in this Counter Affidavit. ROXAN G. APOSTOL

Prosecutor I