Foreigner killed in Surigao also a Swiss national

SURIGAO CITY (MindaNews / 8 Oct) – The foreigner found dead with a stab wound on his chest in a grassy portion of this city Tuesday morning is also a Swiss national, police said today.

Based on his driver’s license, police identified the victim as Florian Mayer, 23, of Geneva, Switzerland. His body was found in Barangay Togbongon here.

Last Sunday, two Swiss nationals were also killed in Opol, Misamis Oriental, by still unidentified gunmen.

Police said that aside from the stab wound on his chest, Mayer’s body also had laceration at the back of the head and in the right leg. He also had bruises on his back.

Herbert C. Gibertas, a resident of Togbongon, told police that while he was traversing the rice field around 8 a.m. Tuesday to buy ice, he noticed a foreign national lying lifeless on the ground. He reported it barangay officials immediately.

Supt. Ruben delos Santos told MindaNews that while they were searching Mayer’s body for identity, they found his wallet which contained his driver’s license, credit cards, a condom, an iPhone, a cigarette lighter, a Smart SIM card, and a pack of cigarettes.

A gold necklace and white gold bracelet were also found on the victim’s body.

Police said prior to Mayer’s death, he checked in at Jazz Apartelle, an inn located in the same barangay at 2:16 a.m. last Monday.

Delos Santos said the victim’s body was found close to Jazz Apartelle, around 100 meters away. It was in a grassy area near a rice field about 10 meters from the road.

Police also found Mayer’s backpack in his room.

Delos Santos said Mayer checked in at room 607 with a companion who registered with a fictitious name (as “John Lennon”) but the latter was nowhere to be found and did not even log out from the apartelle’s log book when the victim’s body was recovered by authorities Tuesday.

Residents close to the inn said the victim was seen with another foreigner running along the national highway for their exercise.

The police official said Mayer must have likely gone to Siargao Island since he had a boat ticket and a terminal fee dated Oct. 5.

Police said they could not rule out robbery yet even after finding out that Mayer’s gold necklace and silver or white gold bracelet were still in his body, along with his wallet with identification card and several credit cards.

At the back of the victim’s body is a tattoo that says “NEVER AGAIN.” There is another on his chest and a spade tattoo on his left belly. His left eyebrow has a pierced earring.

PO3 Cesar Johans C. Castillo, the investigator assigned to the case, said when they cordoned the area, they saw tire marks of a vehicle. They suspected that Mayer may have been killed elsewhere and his body brought to the area only later.

“We are conducting an in-depth investigation and follow up operations for possible identification of the suspects and to determine the motive behind the incident,” Castillo said.

A check with the Surigao office of the Bureau of Immigration showed that Mayer has no records there. But clerk Aris B. Servillas said they are coordinating with other BI offices.

Mayor Jaime Rusillon, of General Luna town in Siargao, told MindaNews he will arrive today in the city to help police on the investigation.

This morning, a group of Swiss tourists from Siargao arrived here. It was learned that their embassy was already notified.

A Swiss national who requested not to be named said the victim used to eat dinner at a Swiss-owned resort in General Luna.

The victim was reportedly a jolly person and had stayed at least two months as tourist in Siargao Island.