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Duterte orders re-arrest of suspect in Christine Silawan killing

Christine Lee Silawan

Curious onlookers surround the body of Christine Lee Silawan, who was found with half of her face skinned in an empty lot in Barangay Bangkal, Lapu-Lapu City. (Contributed photo by JAYBOY D. DONAIRE via Cebu Daily News)

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday said he had ordered the re-arrest of the teen suspect in the killing of 16-year-old Christine Lee Silawan, whose body was mutilated and whose face was skinned down to her skull.

In his speech during PDP-Laban campaign rally in Koronadal City, South Cotabato, the President said he called the prosecutor who ordered the 17-year-old suspect’s release.

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“Sabi ko: I-recall mo yung desisyon. Have the guy re-arrested,” the President said.

[I said: Recall the decision. Have the guy re-arrested.]

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On Friday, the Lapu-Lapu City Prosecutor’s Office ordered the release of the teenage suspect from the social welfare department’s custody because the arrest made by the National Bureau of Investigation was invalid since it was done without a warrant.

READ: Christine Silawan buried as her suspected killer is released

“Di ako papayag ganunin ang bata. Binalatan mo ang bata. Mahuli ka ilang days, tapos palayain? Imposible ang hot pursuit na 24 hours lang. Six days, it’s still hot pursuit,” he added.

[I won’t allow the child to be treated that way. He skinned the child. It took a few days to arrest him and then he’s released. It’s impossible to have a hot pursuit in just 24 hours. Six days, it’s still hot pursuit.]

Silawan, a Grade 9 student at the Maribago High School, was found dead in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu on March 11.

The suspect was arrested by NBI agents at his house in Barangay Maribago, Lapu-Lapu City seven days after Silawan was killed.

Footage from the closed-circuit television cameras showed that the suspect was with the girl before she was killed in the evening of March 10. /atm

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