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Duterte: Pangilinan’s law produced criminal minds

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Duterte: Pangilinan’s law produced criminal minds

Sen. Francis Pangilinan

Sen. Francis Pangillinan. (Photo by RICHARD A. REYES / Philippine Daily Inquirer)

President Duterte on Monday slammed Sen. Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan for being behind a law that he said resulted to producing “people with criminal minds.”

The President was referring to Republic Act No. 9344 or the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act, authored by Pangilinan, which sets the minimum age for criminal liability at 15 years old. It was signed into law by President Arroyo in May 2006.

Speaking before the Boy Scouts of the Philippines in Malacañang where he was installed as Chief Scout, Mr. Duterte said that under the law, children aged 15 who commit rape or robbery with homicide are released to their mothers immediately.

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He said the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act was copied from laws abroad, except that the children here were sent to correctional facilities “where they are lectured on responsibility and sense of accountability” for the offense they have done.

“The problem with Pangilinan was that he was too much in a hurry and had that law passed. That is why we produced about five to six generations of people who committed crimes and released on the same day irrespective of the gravity of the offense,” Mr. Duterte said.

“We have produced people who are of criminal minds and that is why it’s hard to stop the drug problem,” he said.

The reason why there was so much criminality was “nobody respects the law anymore,” the President said.

Mr. Duterte announced that he will soon order the police to make rounds in the streets as he revives his war on drugs and at the same time wages a war on criminals.

He told the young scouts that the government would protect them from the “scourge of drugs” and vowed to kill those who would harm the children who are the country’s future mayors and presidents.

The President also vowed to make mandatory the Reserved Officers’ Training Corps in schools again so that children would learn how to defend themselves and imbibe love of country.

He criticized the prevailing “libertarian attitude” among the youth who do not want to undergo military training and “who do not know anything but to drink, go on rumbles, ruin the nation and do drugs.”

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He reiterated his warnings to drug peddlers—whom he said have already been identified—to stay at home if they want to live longer or he would throw them in Manila Bay and served as “fertilizers for the fish.”

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TAGS: juvenile criminals, minimum age for criminal liability, Philippine news updates, President Duterte, Sen. Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan
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