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Republic of the Philippines HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES TWELFTH CONGRESS Third Regular Session

HOUSE RESOLUT ION No. 1379 ____________________________________________________________________________________ Introduced by Rep. SATUR C. OCAMPO, JOEL G. VIRADOR, SIEGFRED D. DEDURO, CARLOS M. PADILLA, DIDAGEN P. DILANGALEN, ABRAHAM B. MITRA, TED FAILON, AGAPITO A. AQUINO, EDGAR R. ERICE, BERTHOBAL R. ANCHETA ____________________________________________________________________________________ RESOLUTION CALLING FOR AN IMMED IA TE INVESTIGAT ION, IN AID OF LEGISLATION, INTO WHETHER THE RULES OF ENGAGEMENT WERE OBSERVED BY THE SPECIAL WEAPONS ACTION TEAM AND AVIATION SECURI TY GROUP IN THE FATAL SHOOTING OF FORMER AIR TRANSPORTAT IO N OFFICE CHIEF CAPT. PANFI LO VILLARUEL JR. AND HIS AIDE, NAVY LT. RICARDO CATCHI L LAR, WHO SEIZED CONTROL OF THE NINOY AQUINO INTERNAT IO NAL AIRPORT 2 AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL TOWER ON THE EVENI NG OF NOVEMBER 7, 2003, IN THE LIGHT OF CHARGES EXCESSIVE FORCE WAS USED DESPITE VILLARUEL’S REPEATED PLEAS FOR SURRENDER HEARD OVER NATIONAL RADIO W HEREAS at around 11:30 p.m. on November 7, 2003, former Air Transportation Office Chief Capt. Panfilo Villaruel, 62, along with his aide, Navy. Lt. Ricardo Catchillar, 38, seized control of the 12-storey Ninoy Aquino International Airport 2 Air Traffic Control Tower and forced the supervisor, his staff and two others to leave; W HEREAS during the control tower’s takeover, Villaruel aired through media his despair over government corruption and the apparent aimless drift of the country. Villaruel was quoted as saying that despite his efforts to call the attention of the Congress, Senate and military, no one listened. He said that perhaps this time they would; W HEREAS Villaruel was specifically quoted as saying, “I am not here to grab power, I just want to tell you that the Philippines is going nowhere”; W HEREAS Villaruel was a key figure of the historic Edsa II people power which catapulted President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to power. He was among the retired military officers who joined the Estrada Resign Movement which gathered multi-sectoral support and launched mass actions that eventually toppled the Estrada government; W HEREAS Villaruel has been described by his former superior, Transportation Secretary Josefina Lichauco, as “very patriotic” but was “in despair” because of what he perceived as lack of government support for his initiatives especially in aviation projects; W HEREAS Villaruel and his companion were apparently driven to desperation by the sorrowful state of the country’s political and economic situation and had lost all hopes that their grievances could be conveyed more effectively in the government’s highly tangled legal processes; W HEREAS based on news accounts, at around 2:45 a.m. on November 8, eight members of the Special Weapons Action Team and Aviation Security Group Chief Senior Supt. Andres Caro stormed the control tower and shot Villaruel and Catchillar dead within ten minutes;

W HEREAS ASG Chief Caro said that his team had to attack with bursts of gunfire after they were met with gunshots; W HEREAS based on test results by the Philippine National Police, however, Villaruel and Catchillar tested negative for gunpowder burns. As of November 11, PNP chief Hermogenes Ebdane still refused to say how many gunshot wounds the two sustained; W HEREAS President Macapagal-Arroyo’s statement describing the attack as “justified” and brushing off charges that excessive force was used to “neutralize” Villaruel and Catchillar tends to preempt an official investigation and likewise sets a threatening policy — that those who would like to express their frustrations with the current administration may have to pay for it with their blood; W HEREAS Villaruel’s family, on the other hand, deem the tragic incident as an “overkill” and plain “murder.” More than half of Villaruel’s face was blown off, forcing the family to have a closed coffin during the wake. Morgue attendants of Villaruel’s body state that the latter’s arm was peppered with so much bullets it was almost severed; W HEREAS Villaruel’s pleas for surrender were heard on national radio since the assault commenced while he was being interviewed by broadcaster Arnold Clavio over DZBB radio; NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the House of Representatives call for an immediate investigation, in aid of legislation, into whether the rules of engagement were observed by the Special Weapons Action Team and Aviation Security Group in the fatal shooting of former Air Transportation Office chief Capt. Panfilo Villaruel Jr. and his aide, Navy Lt. Ricardo Catchillar, who seized control of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport 2 Air Traffic Control Tower on the evening of November 7, 2003, in the light of charges excessive force was used despite Villaruel’s repeated pleas for surrender which were heard over national radio. Adopted, SATUR C. OCAMPO SIEGFRED D. DEDURO Bayan Muna–Party-List Muna–Party- List

JOEL G. VIRADOR Bayan Muna–Party-List




Nueva Vizcaya, Lone District Maguindanao, 1D

              ABRAHAM B. MITRA



Palawan, 2D Leyte, 1D



ANCHETA Makati, 2D Buk idnon, 2D

Caloocan, 2D


HR 1379 - Panfilo Villaruel killing  

HOUSE RESOLUT ION No. 1379 Republic of the Philippines HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES TWELFTH CONGRESS Third Regular Session W HEREAS Villaruel wa...

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