Teves family faces real danger, lawyer says

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 28) — Amid calls for him to return home and face the allegation that he is involved in the Degamo murder, Negros Oriental Rep. Arnolfo Teves still cannot do so due to threats to his life and to his family, his legal counsel said on Tuesday.

“If you’re talking of danger to the Teves’, there is real danger to the Teves’,” lawyer Ferdinand Topacio told CNN Philippines’ The Source.

Teves, who is being considered by prosecutors as among possible masterminds of the assassination of Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo, has yet to return to the country after flying to the United States for medical purposes. He has cited concerns for his safety.

Former Negros Oriental governor Pryde Henry Teves, the lawmaker’s brother, has urged him to return to the country as the former official believes the congressman will be safe given the assurance from President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Topacio maintained his client would go back to the country if he knows he is not in grave danger.

The lawyer also said there are people giving Teves information about possible threats to his life and these were also the same people who warned him of the raids that were conducted on his properties.

Topacio also said a certain Dr. Paul Teves was also killed in Negros Oriental.

Topacio also noted his client does not have a private army as the only security staff he has are two personnel provided by the government.

“If he had a private army, he would not be raising a fit about having been deprived of his police escorts, he would not be raising a fit about his licenses to carry his firearms being canceled by the government. If he had a private army, he would not care because his private army would be there to protect him,” the lawyer explained.