Dionisio Joaquin, associate publisher and business manager for the Olongapo-Zambales News Forum, was shot dead in the morning of April 12, 1987. Joaquin had organized a strike and was planning to write a story about female workers of the Casa Blanca Restaurant who were being forced to fight against each other while wearing scantily-clad outfits.
A murder case was filed against William Hoge, Nicodemes Fabro, Francisco Dimalanta and Amado Alcala. In 1997, the Supreme Court convicted and sentenced all the accused, except William Hoge who remains at large, to Reclusion Perpetua. Despite this, according to a Philippine Daily Inquirer report, the shooter Fabro was seen out of prison on at least two occasions when he was supposed to have been under police custody.
Writing for the Inquirer on September 17,2003, Joaquin’s brother Ansbert wrote, “…to improve the lot of the impoverished Filipinos, my brother wrote his mind out and, together with 41 other journalists,…was banished from this Earth for doing so. If it is any consolation to their families, especially that of my brother’s, the practice of women boxing in Barrio Barretto catering to American servicemen had stopped since his death”.
The case of Dionisio Joaquin is one of the very few cases of murder against a journalist that has resulted in a conviction in the Philippines. As of November 2011, only 10 out of 124 cases of slain journalists have resulted in conviction.
More information on the killing of journalists and media workers can be found on the CMFR interactive map (http://www.cmfr-phil.org/journalistkilled).