Just a couple of days ago the story below was published in a local newspaper. All of what was written, then some, I knew about for a month now but was asked not to put in my breaking news or column in order not to alert the suspects as to how far the investigation had come along. Once Santos came forward and gave his detailed statement and the NBI filed the detailed case it was all out of the bag. The Mayor and the CD requested a copy of the full file and the local media were chasing it. There should be enough evidence now where Attorney Haban, City Prosecutor, will finally push the case. It has already taken too damn long to do so. This was such a horrible crime and I have heard that maybe David was alive at the time and begged the killer not to shoot him. If this is true, then it fills me with such anger that it is too hard to express. Much of what was written by the reporter is true, some had to be clarified and I wrote those in bold italics. Les Nelson was the third foreign suspect that I alluded to but never mentioned by name. Believe me, this is not over, let us hope the true motive for these murders comes out and I bet a book will be written about this.
3 “tourists” plot ex-RUC murder in Angeles
ANGELESCITY– Three foreigners, including two Americans and an Australian, are being implicated in the Sept 2 murders of Briton David Balmer, an ex-RoyalUlsterConstabulary (RUC), and his Filipina live-in partner Elma De Guia, as investigators are inching closely to get the mastermind who plotted the killings, a very reliable source told Central Luzon Daily yesterday.
“The three foreigners including Timothy Kauffman, and a certain Les Nelson (Australian) and Joe Tramontano, carried out the murder plot but the motive is unclear yet and that keep us puzzled about,” said a top-notch investigator who declined to be named but he said he is closely monitoring every development of Balmer’s case.
All the three foreigners, the source said, stayed in this City and have been identified as heavy user of cocaine and eventually became illegal drug traffickers in the entertainment center particularly alongFields Avenue.
“Kaufman was seen bringing a kilo of “Samar-Coke” before the assassination of Balmer, the stuff was inside the bag with 9mm caliber pistol,” the source further told Central Luzon Daily. This was alleged but never corroborated. He was only confirmed to have small quantities of Cocaine for daily usage. It is unknown who was supplying the Cocaine.
Local police here have identified Kauffman and his driver-aide Jesus Santos as the principal suspects in the Balmer, and De Guia’s murders citing the records of the security logbook of Josefaville ll in Barangay Malabanas. When confronted by NBI agents driver John Santos identified Joe Tramontano as an additional shooter with Kaufman. Santos said Joe Tramontano was hiding in the back seat when they entered and exited the compound. Santos also stated that Les Nelson was involved in the planning of the hit operation and acted as a scout keeping an eye on the victim and tipping off the hit men when the victim left his place of employment (Cambodia Club) headed for Josefaville Subdivision.
Police found Balmer, 54, and De Guia, 26, with multiple gunshot wounds in different parts of their bodies while lying in their bed at the room of their friend’s house situated along2-1 President Quezon StreetJosefaville ll Subdivision.
When checked, the house is owned by businessman Richard Agnew, also a retired RUC, and purportedly Balmer’s business partner.
Kauffman andSantos’ vehicle was parked in front of the Agnew’s residence dawn of Sept 2. It left the areas shortly after the killing.
Investigators tracked down the owner of the vehicle and it was registered under the name of Araceli Garcia, a close friend of Kauffman. Actually his housekeeper
CL Daily source said Garcia was instructed by the suspects to “burn the clothes placed in a garbage bag, and bury the murder weapons - two 9mm caliber pistols with silencer.
Garcia, went missing for a while, but surfaced recently to “tell of her knowledge about the crime on condition that she will be granted by the court as star witness.” CL Daily gathered. Arceli Garcia is considered a key witness no charges will be pursued against her.
“There are efforts to make Garcia as state witness, it is being worked out and application to place her under the Department of Justice Witness Protection Program is being facilitated,” the source pointed out.
The source, however, said all the suspects, except Santos, have fled the country. The first to leave was Kauffman, followed by Joe and Les who fled to Australia. Actually Les Nelson fled to Queensland, Australia on Sept 5th, Kaufman left for an unknown location on Sept 25th, and Joe Tramontano fled to Honolulu, Hawaii, USA on Sept 28th.
But all the pieces of evidence, the source said, were left behind including the handguns now under the safekeeping of the National Bureau of Investigation-Central Luzon Regional Office (NBI-Celro). NBI-Celro Director Atty. Ric Diaz confirmed they have in their custody two 9mm caliber pistols used in the murder of Balmer and De Guia which were reportedly turned over to Agent Noli Bautista by Garcia. No doubt more evidence will surface as the investigation continues.
Diaz said Bautista's mission inAngelesCityhad been terminated shortly after the case against Kauffman,Santosand “Joe” was filed in court. “Bautista is back in Bulacan and has no official business within Pampanga area,” Diaz told Central Luzon Daily.
SOURCE: Central Luzon Daily -- Jess Malabanan