Grenade lobbed in compound of suspected mastermind in Esperat slay; no one hurt

No one was hurt, Chief Supt. Willie Dangane, chief of the Cotabato City police said.

Montaner, who denied having been behind Esperat’s slay said Tuesday’s incident was the third attempt on his life since last year.
          
He said a bomb was lobbed at Montaner’s house in Cotabato City in 2007 and another attempt was made on his life in January this year when hearings on the murder case filed against him and another DA-12 official by relatives of Esperat, were going on.

Esperat was a chemist working in the regional office but turned whistleblower on the corrupt practices there.

Montaner said he knows who is behind the slay attempt but did not name the person. He said the suspects who lobbed the grenade may have been hired to silence him.

Montaner said that at around 7 p.m., while he and his family were about to start their evening prayer in a mosque inside his residential compound, an unidentified suspect lobbed a fragmentation grenade that went off. He did not say exactly where the grenade exploded.
 
Dangane theorized the suspects could be motorcycle-riding men who tossed the grenade inside the compound.

The mosque, however, is in the inner part of the compound.

In January this year, a grenade was planted in Montañer’s car while it was parked at the DA office along Sinsuat Avenue, Cotabato City.

The Cotabato City police and the police in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) claimed to have conducted a manhunt for Montaner and his fellow suspected mastermind, Estrella Sabay in February and March, to serve the arrest warrants issued by a regional trial court in Cebu City.

Both the Cotabato City and ARMM police were unable to serve the warrant.

In late March, the Court of Appeals granted a petition for a 60-day temporary restraining order filed by Montaner and Sabay. The two had questioned the jurisdiction of Cebu regional trial court Judge Simeon Dumdum Jr. over the  murder case filed against them.

The TRO suspended the effects of the warrant of arrest, lawyer Nena Santos, counsel for the Esperats, said.  (MindaNews)

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