Broward News

Broward Man Extradited to Philippines

It's possible that you bought a house from Cezar Mancao, who from the outside seemed a nice, normal Filipino immigrant making a living in real estate in Broward County.

Turns out that despite Mancao's quiet life here -- living in a half-million-dollar house in Pembroke Pines with his wife and children, playing basketball on a community league -- he had been a hotshot officer in the Philippine National Police, essentially the FBI of the Philippines.

In an affidavit executed this February, Mancao broke a years-long silence by coming forward to claim that in 2000, Panfil Lacson -- who was then the head of the PNP and has since become a Philippine senator -- ordered a gruesome double murder of a journalist and his driver. The two men were strangled and their bodies found doused with gasoline and burned in a creek bed. Mancao said that after the murder, Lacson sent several underlings including himself to the US to keep quiet, paying them a living allowance and asking them to spy on Lacson's political rival, current president Gloia Arroyo.

For years, authorities have been trying to figure out who masterminded the murder plot. The story is one of the most closely watched national scandals playing out in Asia today. Read about the back story here

Mancao was extradited and landed in the Philippines today.  He is expected to testify against Lacson in the coming weeks.

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Deirdra Funcheon