P1M reward up for info on missing couple

Pampanga Governor Dennis Pineda and Vice Governor Lilia Pineda have announced a reward of P1 million for anyone with information that can point to the whereabouts of missing pageant contestant Geneva Lopez and her Israeli boyfriend Yitshak Cohen.

The couple has been missing since visiting Capas, Tarlac on June 21, 2024.

The Sto. Tomas local government, where Lopez’s family resides, has also offered a P150,000 reward in the hope of aiding the search efforts.

“Ako namamag-asa na mawala ang pag-aalala ng kanyang mga magulang. Kasalukuyang pa ding nangangalap ng karagdagang ebidensya ang kapulisan at nagdo-dokumento ng mga CCTV footages na maaaring makapagbigay linaw kung saang lugar maaaring pumunta ang mga nawawalang biktima,” Mayor John Sambo of Sto. Tomas, said.

A special investigation task group has been assembled to explore all possible leads in the case. 

Police said it is premature to consider Lopez’s boyfriend and the middleman involved in their land purchase as persons of interest.

“On the part of the middle man, siya naman po ay kusang pumunta doon po sa police station [at] nagbigay po siya ng pahayag. Investigation would somehow consider this as additional information [pero] kailangan nating i-validate [at] i-confirm ang sinasabi niya pong pahayag at i-compare sa mga na-recover… kinu-collate pa po nating mga ebidensya,” PCOL. Jean Fajardo, Philippine National Police (PNP) spokesperson, said.

Police conducted a macro-etching examination on an abandoned sports utility vehicle (SUV) recovered during the investigation. They confirmed that its chassis and engine numbers were intact. 

Fingerprints retrieved from the vehicle are also being analyzed to identify those who may have used it.

As of now, the Lopez family is yet to release a statement.