Riyadh: A decision by Philippine’s Zamboanga prosecutor’s office to dismiss a criminal case against two men accused of involvement in the shooting of well-known Saudi preacher Sheikh Ayed Al-Qarni last month was faced with a wave of criticism from both Saudis and Filipinos, Arab News reported.
According to a report in a Philippine publication on Tuesday, Zamboanga prosecutor Ricard Cabaron dismissed the attempted murder case filed against Mujer Abubakar Amilassan and Junaide Cadir Saleh because of a lack of evidence.
Prosecutor General Claro Arellano, head of the National Prosecution Service, said the police could still file a motion for reconsideration within 15 days upon receipt of the resolution.
Saudi journalist Saeed Abdullah said that the “credibility and image of the Philippines’ intelligence and judicial system” would be affected by the decision, particularly because of the evidence available and the fact that it took place in public.
Gilbert G. Alarcon, a senior ISO system auditor at Dar Arriyadh Consultants, said that the dismissal of the case against Filipinos implicated in the “gruesome attack of the well-known and highly respected Sheikh Al-Qarni of Saudi Arabia has placed the entire country in a bad light”.
Alarcon said that the Filipinos in the Kingdom would bear the brunt of the decision and that it would have been better if the men had been forced into a trial, which would have allowed them to be proven guilty or released.
Al-Qarni conducted a lecture at Western Mindanao State University in Zamboanga City when the incident happened. He sustained three gunshot wounds to his right shoulder and the middle portion of his chest while Sheikh Turki Assaegh sustained wounds in his right thigh and left leg.
The gunman, Misuari Kiliste Rugasan, an engineering student, was killed by security escorts.