By: Dolly Yasa
Bacolod City – The wife of self-confessed Berya drug group bagman Ricky Serenio asked the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to investigate her husband’s murder.
Serenio’s widow, who asked her name be withheld for safety reasons, also denied allegations by authorities that her husband returned to illegal drug activities.
According to her, they started a money lending business in Pulupandan and Bago City two years ago.
The couple moved to Pulupandan after Serenio exposed an alleged drug syndicate in Negros Occidental.
The wife said the notebooks recovered by the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) contain the names of borrowers, not code names of persons involved in the drug trade.
Mrs. Serenio also said they started the lending business using the allowance provided to them by former Moises Padilla town mayor Magdaleno Peña.
She also revealed that they had at least 40 clients, all of whom are small business owners, with collections being done daily by her husband himself.
The wife added she wants the NBI to handle the investigation as they do not trust the police as her husband linked several cops to the illegal drugs trade.
She also lashed out at the police for still tagging Serenio as a high value drug target, even though he is no longer involved in such activities.
Aside from Mrs. Serenio, their business partner, who also requested anonymity, affirmed that she owns the car being driven by Serenio when he was waylaid a week ago.
She also denied the reports by police that the bank books, which were also recovered in the vehicle, contain millions of pesos in deposits.
Earlier on Thursday, BCPO director, Police Colonel Henry Biñas, confirmed that the “persons of interest” in Serenio’s murder have been discharged from the hospital and released from police custody.
According to Biñas, Allan Bustamante and Jomar Dumip-ig were downgraded from suspects to persons of interest as they are still collecting evidence which could link them from the murder.
The BCPO director said paraffin tests on both suspects and Serenio’s remains were negative even as investigators are still trying to find witnesses who could definitively point to Bustamante and Dumip-ig as the suspects.
Police are also trying to identify the person who boarded Serenio’s car as the individual reportedly fled following the shooting.
Since no charges have been filed against the two, they were released.