Tea shop owner’s son: I brought water, not toxic substance

Photo Credit: Inter Aksyon

MANILA, Philippines—The son of the tea shop owner who was killed along with a customer last April 9 after sipping tainted milk tea denied bringing toxic chemicals into their store in Sampaloc.

Breaking his silence on the issue on Friday, Lloyd Abrigo disputed their tea shop helper’s claim he brought toxic chemicals; saying all he had with him at the time was water which he poured into a container.

“I didn’t bring any substance except water which I placed into a container. I got the water from a faucet inside the store,” he said.

Photo Credit: GMA News
Photo Credit: GMA News

Earlier, the tea house helper claimed how a glove-wearing Abrigo brought a clear, foul-smelling liquid into the store. The same liquid, he said, could be smelled on the Hokkaido milk tea served to the victims.

He also revealed a similar complaint by a customer in the past which happened right after Abrigo brought the mysterious substance.

The victims, tea shop owner and Abrigo’s father William and customer Suzanne Dagohoy died hours after ingesting the milk tea, but not before experiencing severe seizures. Dagohoy’s boyfriend, Arnold Aydalla, survived the incident but remains confined to the hospital.

Authorities are still investigating what chemical caused the deaths of the victims, although it is speculated the substance could have been cyanide.

Charges Mulled Against Son

Meanwhile, the Manila Police District (MPD) is considering filing charges against the younger Abrigo for obstruction of justice.

According to MPD spokesperson P/Supt. Marissa Bruno, they are looking into whether Abrigo could be held liable for possibly muddling or destroying the evidence.

Abrigo’s tea house helper earlier said he washed the pitcher containing the tainted milk tea.

Bruno said the police are planning to invite Abrigo for questioning. They are also encouraging the Abrigo family to submit an affidavit.

On the other hand, the Abrigo family’s counsel Atty. Benedicto Buenaventura said the younger Abrigo had no intention to destroy the evidence. Nevertheless, he said the family will cooperate with the police so they can solve the case.