Letter to Vatican meant to ‘protect, not destroy, UST’ — Atio’s parents

Carmina and Horacio Castillo Jr., parents of slain UST Law freshman Horacio "Atio" Castillo III, arrive at the Manila Regional Trial Court for the third trial of the case against accused Aegis Juris fratmen. (Photo by Enrico S. Silverio/The Varsitarian)

PARENTS of the slain UST law freshman Horacio “Atio” Castillo III said the letter they had sent to Vatican was meant to “protect, not to destroy” the University.

The Castillos sent a letter to the Vatican in July, requesting for an investigation on how UST handled the hazing case involving their son.

The family marked the first death anniversary of Atio on Sept. 17.

“We have a long line of graduates from UST in the family. My son graduated in UST. We would not want to wreck the school, hindi kami ganoong tao. We want to protect [the youth and the school],” Horacio Castillo Jr., Atio’s father, said in an interview.

Carmina, mother of Atio, said the content of the letter is confidential. It went through “proper protocols and channels,” she said.

The couple defended their communication with the Vatican, saying UST is a pontifical institution.

UST was made a pontifical university by Pope Leo XIII in 1902, which means it is allowed to grant ecclesiastical or Vatican-approved degrees in philosophy, theology and canon law.

Atio’s parents first expressed their interest in filing a complaint against the University before the Vatican in February, amid UST’s supposed silence on the issue.

The University refuted claims of indifference in a statement last October 2017, saying it had formed a committee to conduct an internal investigation.

In a statement last Feb. 18, UST announced the expulsion of eight law students involved in the hazing case after the committee found them guilty of violating the University’s Code of Conduct and Discipline.

See the Varsitarian’s interactive on the first death anniversary of Horacio “Atio” Castillo III: Remembering Horacio



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