Press Release
July 13, 2019

De Lima calls for probe on mysterious death of OFW's son in Navotas

Opposition Senator Leila M. de Lima has called for a thorough investigation into the fate of an overseas Filipino worker's son who was discovered dead under mysterious circumstances in Navotas City.

De Lima, the staunchest critic of the Duterte government's war on drugs, said it is tragic to know once again that another OFW has to go home to bury her son who went missing last July 2 and was killed by police in an alleged anti-robbery operation three days later.

"Tatlong araw nawala tapos nakita na lang ng pamilya na isa nang bangkay at inakusahan pang sangkot sa holdapan. Hindi natin puwedeng palampasin ang ganitong mga insidente ng nanlaban at dapat maimbestigahan," said De Lima.

"It is tragic to see a mother bury her own son. Dasal natin na matigil na ang patayan. Sana lumabas ang buong katotohanan sa likod ng mga patayan," added De Lima, a defender of human rights and social justice.

Based on reports, police claimed they pursued 22-year-old Bryan Conje last July 5 after receiving a call regarding a robbery incident in Bgy. NBBN, Navotas City. Conje allegedly fired at the policeman after he was cornered, forcing them to retaliate.

However, according to the family's account, Conje did not return to their place after accompanying someone to get a ride around midnight last July 2. Three days later, they were informed that Conje was killed. The victim was also wearing a different set of clothes when he was gunned down.

De Lima, a former justice secretary, stressed the need to prove the police's claim that the young victim was involved in a robbery incident and he fought off the arresting law enforcement authorities.

"Kumbaga sa script, gasgas at kumita na ang ganitong kuwento kaya mahirap nang basta-basta paniwalaan," added De Lima, emphasizing this was not the first time that a son of an OFW was also killed in Bgy. NBBS in Navotas City under suspicious circumstances.

In 2017, she recalled a similar incident where Raymart Siapo was reportedly killed by men wearing ski masks a day after a neighbor tagged him as a marijuana peddler before a barangay desk officer.

Raymart, who was born with bilateral club foot, tried to run away from the gunmen but his condition prevented him from doing so. His mother who was a household service worker in Kuwait was forced to go home to demand justice for her son's death.

De Lima has consistently criticized the Duterte's sham and bloody war against illegal drugs that resulted in the rampant extrajudicial and summary killings of suspected drug offenders, including children and women.

This 18th Congress, De Lima is refiling a measure, the anti-EJK bill seeking to exact accountability over the suspicious deaths occurring under the Duterte administration. As of last count, around 25,000 killings have been categorized as "homicide under investigation."

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