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article imageMan jailed for death of Philippine congressman in bombing

By AFP     Nov 17, 2017 in World

The former driver of a Filipino politician was jailed for life Friday over the assassination of a rival congressman in a bombing a decade ago, officials said.

Ikram Indama was found guilty of the November 13, 2007 murders of House of Representatives member Wahab Akbar and three other people in a motorcycle bomb attack, which wounded seven more including two other legislators.

Indama had worked as a driver for Gerry Salapuddin, a former congressman and Akbar's bitter political rival in the mainly-Muslim southern Philippine island of Basilan.

State prosecutor Peter Ong told AFP Indama helped to assemble the bomb and then parked the vehicle outside the lobby of the House of Representatives.

"The court finds accused Ikram Indama guilty beyond reasonable doubt," Manila regional trial court judge Ralph See said in his ruling.

Akbar was assassinated six months after his wife defeated Salapuddin in the Basilan gubernatorial election and the attack stood out even among the country's many deadly political rivalries.

The court heard that Indama and several other suspects assembled the motorcycle bomb at a Manila house owned by Salapuddin.

Murder charges against Salapuddin were thrown out by the Philippine Supreme Court in 2013.

Indama and two other suspects were arrested by Manila police two days after the assassination and pleaded not guilty.

His two co-defendants were found not guilty Friday for "insufficiency of evidence", said the ruling provided to AFP by Ong.

Three other suspects including a police officer remain at large, according to court records.

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