Aegis Juris fratmen in Atio hazing case surrender to NBI

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MEMBERS of the Aegis Juris Fraternity charged in the hazing death of UST law freshman Horacio “Atio” Castillo III voluntarily surrendered to the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) on Friday, a day after a court ordered their arrest.

NBI Director Dante Gierran said the fratmen turned themselves in and were admitted to NBI custody at 11 a.m.

“Their parents are here, together with the [legal] counsels. [T]his is a prearranged surrender to the NBI. We will inform the court of their surrender and will wait for the commitment order from the court,” Gierran said in a press conference.

The fratmen will be temporarily detained at the NBI until a commitment order from the court is released, indicating the place where they will be detained.

The Manila Regional Trial Court ordered the arrest of Mhin Wei Chan, Jose Miguel Salamat, John Robin Ramos, Marcelino Bagtang Jr., Arvin Balag, Ralph Trangia, Axel Munro Hipe, Oliver Onofre, Joshua Macabali and Hans Matthew Rodrigo, who were all formally charged with violating the Anti-Hazing Law last March 8.

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Carmina Castillo, mother of Atio, said the release of warrants of arrest by the Manila court affirmed the fratmen’s involvement in the hazing of the 22-year-old Atio last September of 2017.

“The issuance of warrants of arrest in violation of the Anti-Hazing Law of 1995 (also the year Atio was born) only proves that Aegis Juris practices hazing and that my son died in the hands of people who supposedly know the law are going against the law,” Castillo told the Varsitarian in an interview.

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“The Aegis Juris fraternity practice a culture or violence. For me, the Aegis Juris fraternity is a disgrace to our country, they should be defenders of justice and not be a part of a big coverup and abusers of human rights,” she added.

Civil Law Student Council President Jonathan Santos said the pace of Atio’s case was “surprisingly fast.”

“We are looking forward to the best outcome of the trials for Horacio. Let us just wait for further developments. What we see now is just the beginning of the many legal battles. We might be surprised with their defenses,” Santos said.

John Paul Solano, a licensed medical technologist who brought Atio to the Chinese General Hospital after the hazing rites of the Aegis Juris Fraternity in September, was charged with perjury and obstruction of justice. With reports from Pauline Faye V. Tria

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