PH lawyers group asked the national police and the bureau of investigation to closely look into the foiled ambush-slaying of a lawyer by a cop

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THE Integrated Bar of the Philippines called the National Bureau of Investigation and the Philippine National Police to thoroughly investigate the recent failed assassination attempt on Lawyer Argel Joseph Cabatbat as it vehemently condemns the incident.

The IBP, in a statement, said the recent treacherous attack on Cabatbat as a grievous affront to the rule of law. It also said that while Atty. Cabatbat has survived to relate the circumstances behind the ambush, he is one of the very few who have narrowly evaded the fatal intentions of a barrel of a gun.

Many other lawyers, judges, and officers of the Court, have of late been targeted with pinpoint accuracy and swelling impunity, thereby creating an environment of fear that has manacled the pillars of the justice system, the IBP observed.

The IBP stressed that lawyers must be able to advocate their clients’ causes free from the corrupting elements of fear and intimidation. This ensures that disputes are resolved only within the confines of the law, the evidence, and an impartial tribunal.

Moreover, the IBP said hired killers and their masterminds have no place in civilized society. Regardless of the overwhelming merit a cause of action may present, violence directed against the actors in the legal theater must never be countenanced.

Cabatbat and his companion were wounded after they were ambushed before dawn Tuesday along the north bound lane of EDSA in Barangay Pagasa, Quezon City. Their alleged assailant, Police Officer 1 Mark Boquela Ayeras of the National Capital Region Police Office, was killed while his companion, John Paul Napoles, was wounded and rushed to the East Avenue Medical Center. Another companion, who is believed to be also wounded, remains unidentified as he was able to escape after the incident.

Quezon City Police Department head, Chief Supt. Gullermo Eleazar Photo ©

Quezon City Police District director Chief Supt. Guillermo Lorenzo Eleazar told reporters that Cabatbat and his companions were on board a van when attacked at about 12:30 am. by the motorcycle-riding suspects. The lawyer’s companions, who were armed, returned fire killing the suspect and wounding his companions.

Cabatbat told investigators that he has been receiving numerous death threats lately. He added that whoever is behind the ambush might be involved in one of the cases he has been handling.

Eleazar, for his part, vowed the investigate the incident thoroughly to bring the ambush mastermind into justice.

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