Family Wants Body of Executed OFW Repatriated

MANILA – The family of the overseas Filipino worker recently beheaded in Riyadh is appealing for his remains to be repatriated to the Philippines.

Joven Esteva’s family in Barangay Topland, Koronadal City was shocked with the news that the death sentence was already carried out on Monday.

“Nangyari po ito kahapon. Convicted po ito ng pagpatay sa kanyang Saudi employer at sa pag-injure sa anak ng kanyang employer. Nahatulan po siya ng kamatayan sa kabila ng pagsisikap ng ating embassy para humingi ng kapatawan pero hindi napagbigyan ng pamilya,” said Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Charles Jose.

Esteva’s wife and four children were supposed to visit him in Saudi Arabia this March or April.

According to his wife Nerlyn, she last talked to him on Monday afternoon but there was no indication from him that he would be executed on that day.

It was 6 p.m. Monday when the family received the bad news from Esteva’s friend in jail. This was followed up by another call from their lawyer.

The family said they tried to appeal to the victim’s family for forgiveness but they refused to forgive the OFW.

But in the nine years that Estreva was detained, he still managed to provide for his family.

His eldest child now wants his remains repatriated.

Estreva went to Saudi Arabia as a family driver in 2006. The following year, he experienced health problems and was said to have suffered from insomnia. His employer reportedly had him checked up but the results were negative.

It was in May of that year when Estreva killed his employer, a university professor in Riyadh, and injured his son.

Despite an appeal by the embassy that Esteva was not in his right state of mind during the incident, the Court of Cassation re-affirmed the death sentence. Reports from Francis Canlas and DZMM


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