Court metes ‘life term’ to gunman in town councilor’s slay

By: Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD City – The suspect in the murder of Ilog town Councilor Antonio Gequillana in June 2011 was found guilty by the Bacolod City Regional Trial Court Branch 42 Wednesday.

Judge Fernando Elumba sentenced Ryan Gatoc to “reclusion perpetua” or a 20 to 40-year prison sentence.

Atty. Jomax Ortiz, private prosecutor in the case, said the court also ordered Gatoc to indemnify the  heirs of the victim P100,000 as civil indemnity, P100,000 as moral damages, and P100,000 as exemplary damages.

On June 27, 2011, Gequillana was leaving East View Hotel in Barangay Villamonte here when Gatoc shot him at close range.

Gatoc then fled on his motorcycle.

A security guard witnessed the shooting.

A week after the incident, Gatoc surrendered to the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group operatives and was later charged with murder.

The suspect refused to reveal who ordered him to kill the town councilor.