Court junks Boniel’s request to post bail
CEBU, Philippines — The Regional Trial Court Branch 22 in Cebu City has denied the request of former Bohol Provincial Board member Niño Rey Boniel to post bail in the parricide case he is facing on the murder of his wife, former Bien Unido town mayor Gisela Boniel.
Acting Presiding Judge Dax Gonzaga Xenos, in an order dated May 6, 2020, said Boniel’s petition for bail was not acted upon due to some reasons.
“Considering that the respective signatures of counsels do not appear in the pleading, it was not sent in the required PDF format, and there being no showing that it can be filed online under the applicable SC Circular, the Very Urgent Petition for Bail filed yesterday by accused Niño Rey Boniel through the previous, and not official, email address of the court is one that produces no legal effect and is thus not acted upon,” Xenos said.
Boniel, who is currently detained at the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center (CPDRC), had asked the court to grant him bail in the face of imminent risk to his life brought about by the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
“The detainees at CPDRC are not spared by the pandemic. As of April 30, 2020, some eighteen (18) inmates tested positive of the NCOV-19 and many others including the accused, are already manifesting mild symptoms of NCOV-19 infection although they have not yet been tested,” Boniel said in his petition through his counsel, Atty. Gerardo Carillo.
“The infection of inmates in detention cells are in the news and social media everyday. These are thus, a public knowledge. Equally, the obtaining condition of our detention cells in the country, particularly the congestion of inmates inside, is a public knowledge too. And under such congested jail condition, accused could not help but worry every minute of the day for fear of his life which has been seriously threatened since day one of the NCOV-19,” the accused added.
Lawyer Amando Virgil Ligutan, counsel for the family of Gisela, said the petition was bound to fail from the start.
“In fact, it is the second petition for bail that they filed. The first one was already denied. It is just right that the accused remain incarcerated for the gruesome murder of the late mayor Gisela Boniel,” said Ligutan.
Niño Rey has been the principal suspect in the shooting to death of Gisela – whose body was thrown into the seawaters between Caubian Island and Olango Island in Lapu-Lapu City – on June 7, 2017.
Gisela’s remains have yet to be found. LPM (FREEMAN)