Two gunmen on motorcycles shot Agustin four times as he was
returning from work near the northern town of
according to local and international news reports. Agustin, who was driving,
had a passenger, his nephew, who suffered a leg wound, according to the
reports. The journalist was taken to a local hospital but died the next
morning, the news reports said.
The 37-year-old radio broadcaster was known for on-air
commentaries criticizing official corruption, according to news reports.
Nick Malasig, a DZJC colleague, said Agustin had received
text message death threats in the weeks before his murder, according to The
Associated Press and the local press freedom group Center for Media Freedom and
Responsibility. On May 7, Agustin’s house was sprayed with gunfire by
unidentified assailants, according to news reports. Nobody was injured in that attack,
the reports said.
Agustin had also reported on local election irregularities,
including the disqualification of candidates, according to the media center.
Malasig said his colleague had suspected a local politician was behind the May
assault on his house, the center told CPJ.
On June 21, police filed murder charges against Pacific
Velasco, newly elected vice mayor of Baccara, aide Leonardo Banaag, and two
other suspects, according to the Philippine
Daily Inquirer. In his radio commentaries, Agustin had spoken out against
Velasco, who had been convicted in a recent graft case, the Inquirer reported. Agustin’s nephew
identified Banaag as the gunman, the Inquirer