Sotto seeks death penalty in drug cases
More News from Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—Sen. Vicente Sotto III filed a bill that would reimpose the death penalty in drug-related cases.
Sotto’s Senate Bill No. 1 would also create a special 140-division Dangerous Drugs Court (DDC) with offices in all regions of the country to unclog courts of drug-related cases.
On the special court’s authority to impose the death penalty, Sotto, a former chair of the Dangerous Drugs Board, said, “The drugs court may impose the death penalty only in accordance with the act in appropriate cases, notwithstanding Republic Act No. 9346 (that banned the imposition of the death penalty).”
“The Supreme Court shall be consulted about this provision before it becomes final,” the provision further reads.
Sotto envisions 140 three-member court divisions to exclusively hear and try violations of the Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002. A DDC justice shall have the same rank as a justice of the Court of Appeals and the antigraft court Sandiganbayan.
Sotto’s two other bills, the first three for the 16th Senate, also deal with the implementation of the country’s dangerous drugs laws.
Senate Bill No. 2 seeks an amendment to the Dangerous Drugs Act which would require that an inventory of seized drugs be conducted at the nearest police outpost instead of at the site of the confiscation.
Senate Bill No. 3, on the other hand, seeks to provide affordable PhilHealth coverage for those seeking drug rehabilitation.
The first bill seeks to provide each DDC division with a chief prosecutor, two deputy prosecutors and two senior assistant prosecutors that would be appointed by the President.
“Since the effectivity of the (Dangerous Drugs Act), the number of dangerous drugs cases filed… have been steadily on the rise, clogging the dockets of specially designated regional trial courts,” Sotto said in his explanatory note.
Sotto noted that a number of these cases had remained pending for a long time and the speedy administration of justice had been greatly prejudiced, “impairing not only the resolution of dangerous drugs cases, but other important cases and matters pending in the specially designated regional trial courts.”
It is imperative to create special courts in each region of the Philippines, Sotto said.
Get Inquirer updates while on the go, add us on these apps:
Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of INQUIRER.net. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94