— Domani Spero
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In November 2012, we blogged about the murder of a spouse of a U.S. diplomat assigned to the US embassy in the Philippines (see US Embassy Manila: George Anikow, Diplomatic Spouse Killed in Early Morning Altercation; and George Anikow Murder: “A Macho Against Macho Issue” Says Philippine Police).
In an interview last week with Philippine media, Ambassador Philip Goldberg expressed disappointment over the disposition of the murder case:
In an interview with ANC, Goldberg said nobody “served a day for that brutal crime.” The diplomat is referring to the murder of US Marine Major George Anikow’s killing on November 24, 2012 at a security checkpoint in Bel-Air. The incident was partly captured in a security camera. Charged were Juan Alfonso Abastillas, Osric Cabrera, Galicano Datu III, and Crispin de la Paz.
Goldberg noted only two suspects were convicted of homicide “but were given probation” by the trial court. The two others got scot free from any charges. […] He said it’s been hard explaining to the family as to “why this happened in a case of very brutal murder.”
The Philippine Justice Department had reportedly filed murder charges previously against the four suspects who, according to reports, come from well-to-do families — Juan Alfonso Abastillas, 24; Crispin dela Paz, 28; Osric Cabrera, 27; and Galicano Datu III, 22.
News report from the Philippines indicate that the victim’s sister, Mary Anikow and his 77 year-old mother traveled to Manila to observed the trial in 2013. “The United States is not perfect; everyone knows this. But most people generally don’t get away with murder,” Ms Anikow said.
Ambassador Goldberg in the ANC interview said that the Philippine Department of Justice promised the embassy there could be something done with regard to the probation. “But it has been appealed once, and it was denied. So it looks like it’s the end of the road,” he said.
‘Well-to-do kids accused in murder of American diplomat’s husband get visas to study in the United States’ — please, can we at least make sure we don’t end up with a headline like that?
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