By Vann Marlo M. Villegas

THE BROTHER of slain businessman Dominic L. Sytin denied in his counter-affidavit being the mastermind behind the murder on Nov. 28 last year.

Alan Dennis L. Sytin maintained his innocence in his counter-affidavit submitted to the Department of Justice (DoJ) on Monday.

“I deny the charges against me for being false and gravely unjust. I am innocent. I did not nor did I have anything to do with the killing of my brother, Dominic Sytin,” Dennis Sytin said.

“I regret that although the police investigators themselves have acknowledged that I was cooperative in their investigation and that I gave them all the information I had, I am now forced to defend myself against the Complaint of the police who now point me as responsible for my own brother’s death despite the fact that they never asked me to make a statement,” he added.

Mr. Sytin is facing complaints of murder and frustrated murder before the DoJ in connection with the murder of his older brother and wounding of his bodyguard Efren Espartero.

In a press conference on March 11, Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Oscar D. Albayalde tagged Mr. Sytin as the alleged mastermind after he was identified by confessed hitman Edgardo Luib in his testimony.

In his counter-affidavit, Mr. Sytin described Mr. Luib as a “’polluted source’ whose statements must be viewed with the greatest caution and circumspection.”

He also said there was no clear and categorical statement from Mr. Luib that he is the mastermind and that he and Oliver Fuentes, a former United Auctioneers, Inc. (UAI) employee fired by the slain Mr. Sytin, were the ones he met at All Hands beach in September last year to plot Dominic Sytin’s murder.

“Luib was uncertain when he purportedly identified the alleged mastermind of the murder of Dominic from the few photographs presented to him by police investigators,” Dennis Sytin said.

“Luib’s unsureness as to his identification of the ‘Boss Dennis’ that he allegedly met with is in contrast to his certainty as to his identification of Oliver as ‘Ryan Rementilla,’” he added. He also noted that there is no physical evidence which would link him to the crime.

Mr. Sytin also claimed that “overwhelming evidence on record” show that Mr. Fuentes was the mastermind of his brother’s murder.

“Oliver had motive. He was a disgruntled former trusted employee whom Dominic fired in August 2018 for allegedly padding Job Orders and pocketing Php1 Million from UA collections,” Dennis Sytin said in his counteraffidavit.

He pointed out further that Mr. Fuentes has a standing warrant of arrest for murder and was the one who called Mr. Luib, fetched him from the bus terminal, and gave him instructions and information on Dominic Sytin’s whereabouts.

Dominic L. Sytin is the CEO of UAI, chairman of Foton Philippines, and director and chairman of the board of listed LMG Chemicals Corp. He was shot dead outside the Lighthouse Hotel at the Subic Bay Freeport Zone.

In the same March 11 press conference, Police Regional Office 3 (Central Luzon) Regional Director Police Brig. General Joel Napoleon Coronel said the Sytin brothers were in conflict over business, while Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) chief Police Director Amador V. Corpus said the younger Sytin was fired in 2015 by Dominic Sytin for diverting equipment to his own company.