Published: Wednesday 13 June, 2018

Two Suspects in Killing of Fr. Richmond Nilo Caught on CCTV Following Priest

Police are looking for at least two suspects who followed Fr. Richmond Nilo before he was killed. CCTV video captured two motorcycle-riding suspects following Fr. Nilo from barangay to barangay before killing him in Barangay Mayamot, Zaragoza, Nueva Ecija.

Fr. Richmond Nilo

FR. Richmond Nilo was gunned down by two men who followed him to the chapel. (Twitter/NCCPhilippines)

Fr. Richmond Nilo was shot dead while celebrating mass early Sunday evening in a chapel in Barangay Mayamot. Witnesses said two gunmen fired from the window near the altar killing Fr. Richmond Nilo on the spot. Inside the chapel, at least 7 empty shells and two slugs from a .45 caliber pistol were recovered, according to Rappler

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On Monday, the Philippine National Police (PNP) vowed to solve the killing. They now have on hand CCTV videos from nearby barangays which show that a vehicle followed the priest before he reached the chapel. A motorcycle bearing two suspects likewise trailed him.

Upon reaching the chapel, the vehicle drove off while the motorcycle stopped. The two riding in tandem then alighted and shot the priest. They immediately fled the scene.

However, another CCTV video from a nearby barangay showed that he vehicle that earlier followed the priest and the motorcycle-riding suspects, met up after the killing. Witnesses said the vehicle had different license plates in front and at the back.

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The videos showed that the priest’s killing was well-planned. It also shows that the suspects are familiar with the area because they lowered their heads in areas covered by CCTV cameras.

Fr. Richmond Nilo was the third Catholic priest gunned down in a span of six months. In April, Fr. Mark Ventura was gunned down after celebrating Sunday mass in a barangay in Cagayan province. Fr. Marcelito Paez, meanwhile, was killed a few hours after assisting the release of a political prisoner in Jaen, Nueva Ecija last December. Their murders are still unsolved to this day.

Meanwhile, the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) has rejected suggestions that priests, especially those in far-flung areas, be armed.