MANILA, Philippines — The relatives of a 38-year-old man who was arrested in Baao, Camarines Sur almost two months ago on drug charges and was later detained at a jail in Caloocan City believe that Angelo “Totoy” Bisuña was a victim of torture.
Angelo’s sister, Niks Bisuña, on Thursday told reporters that after her brother died allegedly in prison last October 9, she found his body full of bruises and his legs badly injured and appeared to have been burned.
Angelo’s remains were then brought to the Philippine General Hospital for autopsy.
According to Niks, it was there that forensic pathologists found out that Angelo’s head was stuffed with scraps of newspaper and other wastes. When his abdomen was opened, it was also discovered that Angelo’s intestines and other internal organs had been disconnected.
Also, Niks said pathologists had discovered that part of Angelo’s brain was in his stomach.
“Pagbukas sa ulo n’ya, may part do’n na may dyaryo at may mga basura. Tapos, pagbukas sa tiyan n’ya, hiwa-hiwalay ‘yong bituka n’ya, pati ‘yong organs n’ya. Part of his brain, nasa stomach n’ya,” she said.
“So ibig sabihin, hindi pa sila nakuntento. Pinahirapan na nga nila ‘yong kapatid ko, pinatay, tinratong parang basura, dinesecrate pa nila. Kaya sobrang nakakagalit talaga,” said Niks, who on Thursday joined the launch in Quezon City of Manlaban sa EJK, a group of lawyers, judges, law professors and students against extra-judicial killings.
[So that means they were not contented with what they did. They made my brother suffer, they killed him, treated him like a garbage and also desecrated his remains. That’s why it’s really maddening.]
But according to the police, Angelo died because of an infection that reached his brain.
The Manila Times reported that according to a spot report it had obtained from the Caloocan police, Angelo, on October 8, complained of sudden pain in his legs, which prompted authorities to rush him to the Caloocan City Medical Center.
He died of “septic encephalofaty and cellulitis bilateral legs” at 4:15 p.m. on October 9, according to the same report.
Earlier news reports said Angelo was arrested in Camarines Sur last September 12 and was transferred to Metro Manila and detained at the Caloocan police headquarters on Sept. 26.
But Niks and her family doubted that his brother died of infection because his body was full of bruises and his legs, which appeared to have been burned, were swollen with wounds.
“Hindi kami naniniwala dahil ni walang anong sugat ‘yong kapatid ko, in a matter of one week, nagkagano’n agad s’ya [We don’t believe because my brother didn’t have any wounds (then) in a matter of one week, he became like that.]
Niks said that while Angelo was indeed a drug user, he was not a criminal and had a job and a good family, but was suffering from a mental illness.
“Hindi naman po kriminal ang kapatid ko. Drug user s’ya oo. Pero may trabaho s’ya before, maayos na pamilya. May mental illness and kapatid namin.”