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Fearing Davao 'death squad,' Matobato asks SC to move trial of cases to Manila

Edgar Matobato taking his oath before testifying at the Senate hearings on extra-judicial killings in September. FILE PHOTO BY JOSEPH VIDAL, SENATE PRIB
The online news portal of TV5

MANILA - Confessed hitman Edgar Matobato has asked the Supreme Court to transfer to Manila the hearings of the criminal cases he is facing in Davao City, where he said the members of an alleged death squad he had testified against at the Senate are still around.

In a petition filed for him by his lawyers, Matobato told the SC he would like his arraignment, preliminary conference, pre-trial, trial and promulgation of his case to be moved to the Metropolitan Trial Court in Manila.

Matobato expressed fear for his life after linking President Rodrigo Duterte to alleged extra-judicial killings in Davao when the latter was still mayor.

Matobato said members of an alleged Davao Death squad still roam freely and engage in criminal activities.

He claimed that some of them are in Metro Manila. 

The Davao metropolitan trial court had issued an arrest warrant on Matobato on a 2014 illegal possession of firearms case, just days after he was discharged as witness by the Senate Justice committee hearing alleged EJKs in President Duterte's war on illegal drugs.

According to Matobato, if the President's own declarations alone were used as basis - including his off-the-cuff remarks that he had "killed" 1,000 suspects and his professed mission to kill criminals - there's reason to believe that he is a confirmed killer; if not a serial killer, mass murderer and psychopath.