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SAYS ARCHBISHOP SOC VILLEGAS

Cops ready to turn whistleblowers on EJKs seeking Church protection

/ 01:10 PM October 02, 2017
Socrates B. Villegas - Cathedral of Saint John the Evangelist in Dagupan City - 23 March 2017

Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas. (Photo from CBCP News)

Vowing to “expose all” that they know about “extrajudicial killings” in the country, some policemen sought the protection of the Catholic Church, Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas said on Monday.

“They have expressed their desire to come out in the open about their participation in extrajudicial killings and summary executions. Their consciences are troubling them,” Villegas said in a statement published at the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) website.

Villegas said the whistleblowers, whom he did not name, recently met with him and other officials of the Archdiocese of Lingayen-Dagupan to ask for “succor and protection.”

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Villegas said the archdiocese, through its “ministry of mercy,” would be willing to give sanctuary to the cops, including their families, if they would be able to present evidence for their allegations.

“We will look prudently into the sincerity of their motives and the veracity of their stories,” said the archbishop.

Villegas also assured that they will not turn over the cops to the State.

“If their preference is to stay with us in the Church, they will not be turned over to the State under its own witness protection program,” Villegas said.

“In the areas of pastoral counselling and values formation, the Archdiocese of Lingayen-Dagupan will be the loving teacher and mother of our law enforcers. Let us be guardian angels for one another,” he added.

In a previous statement, Villegas also backed two self-confessed Davao Death Squad (DDS) members – Edgar Motabato and retired police officer Arturo Lascañas, who both linked President Rodrigo Duterte to the DDS.

Duterte has repeatedly denied ordering the killings, either as president or as former Davao City mayor.        /kga

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TAGS: CBCP, DDS, duterte, EJK, Whistleblower
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