PCIE investigation nears end

VIETNAMESE FISHERMEN’S DEATHS

BAYAMBANG—The events that led to the deaths of two Vietnamese fishermen and arrests of five others after a patrol ship of the Philippine Navy (BRP Miguel Malvar) chased a Vietnamese fishing boat, on September 23 some 40 nautical miles off Cape Bolinao, are finally close to being fully established.

While no details were divulged, this development was reported after the third case conference of the Provincial Committee on Illegal Entrants (PCIE) and its sub-group Special Investigation Task Group (SITG) Wednesday afternoon at the Events Center in Bayambang town.

P/Chief Inspector Christopher Rey Natnat, deputy chief of the Police Community Relations and designated spokesperson of PCIE, however, said the committee still can not disclose its findings on who should be held liable pending consolidation of submitted pieces of evidence by the PCIE prior to its submission to the Regional Committee on Illegal Entrants (RCIE).

He said the committee already received the  report on the ballistic examination of the firearms of the Philippine Navy crewmen of BRP Miguel Malvar who reportedly opened fire on the Vietnamese fishing boat, the autopsy report on the cadavers of the two dead Vietnamese fishermen, the sworn statements of the five arrested Vietnamese fishermen and of the  Philippine Navy crewmen.

In attendance in that case conference were from the Philippine National Police, Philippine Coast Guard, Philippine Navy, Bureau of Immigration, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), Department of Foreign Affairs, Criminal Investigation and Investigation Group, PNP Crime Laboratory and the Philippine Information Agency.

The final report will be made by P/Sr. Superintendent Ronald Lee, Pangasinan Police Director, said Natnat.

The remains of the two dead Vietnamese fishermen, Phan Van Liem and Le Van Reo, have not been claimed by the Vietnamese Embassy from a funeral parlor in Bani town.

Meanwhile, the five Vietnamese fishermen were ordered to return to their boat moored at Sual wharf under the watch of the BFAR and the Philippine Coast Guard. (Leonardo Micua)