THIRTY complaints related to the murder of Negros Orientals governor and 26 other victims have been filed before a Bayawan City regional trial court, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said on Monday.  

At a livestreamed news briefing, Interior Secretary Benjamin C. Abalos, Jr. said nine murder complaints, 15 frustrated murder complaints, three attempted murder complaints and illegal gun and explosives raps were filed over the past two weeks.  

He said a supposed “main player” in the crime has surrendered to authorities.  

“We understand that the suspect has vital and critical information that we hope will pave for the resolution of this case the soonest possible time,Mr. Abalos said.  

The late governor Roel R. Degamo and eight others, including two village leaders, were killed while 15 were wounded when armed men opened fire in his residential compound, where cash aid was being distributed on March 4.  

National police chief Rodolfo S. Azurin, Jr. last week said authorities would continue its joint checkpoints to ensure the security of Negros Oriental amid the ongoing manhunt for more suspects.   

Four suspects were arrested last week, two of whom tagged Negros Oriental Rep. Arnolfo ArnieA. Teves, Jr. as the mastermind behind the governors killing.    

Mr. Abalos said officials from the Justice department and the DILG are in pursuit of 12 more individuals tagged as possible suspects in the killings.  

Last week, the Supreme Court transferred the murder cases related to Mr. Degamo’s murder to a Manila regional trial court following a request from Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin C. Remulla.  

The Justice chief said the media attention the case has attracted may create a hostile environment for those involved.  

Other cases related to the case may also be transferred to the Manila court, the tribunal said.  

Meanwhile, the House ethics panel on Monday gave Mr. Teves 24 hours to report for work onsite or he will be sanctioned, the committee chairman said.  

We [decided to] extend our time to let our colleague (Mr. Teves) respond within 24 hours to go home,House ethics and privileges committee chairman and COOP-NATCCO Party-list Rep. Felimon M. Espares told reporters after the panels hearing. 

Mr. Espares said that his panel will decide on the appropriate sanctions by 4 or 5 p.m. on March 21 if Mr. Teves fails to appear at the committee meeting.  

He added Mr. Teves did not appear via teleconference on Monday because the committee mandated him to appear physically.  

When asked about which country Mr. Teves is currently staying in, Mr. Espares said, We do not know, and nobody can tell.”  

Apart from being linked to the governors shooting, Mr. Teves was recently charged with murder complaints over three killings in 2019.   

The committee last week sent Mr. Teves a letter asking him to inform the panel of his whereabouts and to report to Mondays meeting.  

Despite giving jurisdiction to the House ethics panel, Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez has called on Mr. Teves to come home and report to Congress as his travel clearance already expired on March 9. John Victor D. Ordoñez and Beatriz Marie D. Cruz