Philippine authorities helpless against fugitive

12th May 2005, Comments 0 comments

12 May 2005, MANILA - The Philippines' justice department admitted on Thursday that it has little recourse to pursue a German man who fled the country while facing criminal charges for allegedly killing a compatriot and three other people last year.

12 May 2005

MANILA - The Philippines' justice department admitted on Thursday that it has little recourse to pursue a German man who fled the country while facing criminal charges for allegedly killing a compatriot and three other people last year.

Justice Secretary Raul Gonzalez noted that the Philippines does not have an extradition treaty with Germany, where the suspect, Uwe Friesl, has already fled.

"The only thing we can do is through diplomatic intervention," Gonzalez said, in reaction to reports by a German embassy official in Manila that Friesl was spotted in his hometown in Bavaria two months ago.

"We are going to request the Department of Foreign Affairs to do that to seek the arrest of Friesl," he added.

Friesl, a Filipino and three unnamed suspects have been charged with the killing of fellow German Anton Faustenhauser, Swiss millionaire and renowned art dealer Manfred Schoeni, British architect John Cowperthwaite and Filipino maid Irma Sarmiento.

The victims were repeatedly stabbed to death at Faustenhauser's mansion on the resort island of Boracay, 310 kilometres south of Manila, in May 2004.

According to the investigation, the killings were triggered by a botched robbery and that Friesl, who worked for Faustenhauser, was one of those responsible for the crime.

The May killings had sparked security concerns on Boracay, a favourite destination for local and foreign tourists and famous for its white sand beaches.

Boracay is home to more than 12,000 people, many of whom are westerners who partly own some of the hotels, restaurants and bars on the island. It is considered relatively safe for tourists, being far from hotbeds of Islamist and communist insurgencies.

DPA

Subject: German news

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