Duterte’s surrender order to 1,900 freed convicts has merit – Angara
MANILA, Philippines – Though the issue may still be raised before the Supreme Court, Senator Sonny Angara on Thursday said President Rodrigo Duterte’s surrender order to freed convicts has merit.
“I think may merit naman because he has to somehow—yan yung mga hindi dumaan sa Secretary of Justice so they have to review the cases and see if their entitlement to the good conduct time allowance was correct in law,” Angara said in an interview on ANC.
Citing the 1967 case of People vs Tan, wherein the Supreme Court ruled for the rearrest of Fidel Tan, Angara said that freed convicts can be rearrested if there are inconsistencies with the computation of their good conduct time allowance (GCTA).
READ: ‘Duterte order to rearrest heinous crime convicts anchored on 2 SC rulings’
While Angara backs the order, he said he believes that there will be people running to the courts to question Duterte’s order.
“Ultimately, I think, there will be those who will question it in the Supreme Court but at this point there is no doubt that even the President makes a contemporaneous interpretation of the law and that is his interpretation of the law and we have to respect that until it’s questioned and overruled,” he added.
“There’s been a violation of a department order. And secondly, he sees that there had been cases like Sanchez where he already violated prison rules, the manual of the DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government) and DOJ (Department of Justice), and he had drugs while in prison wala man lang yun sa karpeta niya or his jail records,” Angara said, referring to the case of rape and murder convict and former Calauan, Laguna Mayor Antonio Sanchez.
It was Sanchez’s possible early release under the GCTA law that sparked public outrage and prompted the Senate and the House of Representatives to conduct separate probes. /gsg
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