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GCTA controversy

Interpol to help track down released convicts  

/ 02:20 PM September 06, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) will tap the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) to hunt convicts of heinous crimes released on good conduct who might have already left the country.

In a chance interview with reporters on Friday, Interior Secretary Eduardo Año said he believes that some of the 1,914 convicts of heinous crimes released earlier than their prison sentence due to the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) law may have fled overseas.

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“Yung mga nasa abroad, oo. At tsaka i-a-apply natin ‘yung extradition agreement natin sa mga appropriate countries na meron tayo (For those who are now abroad, yes. We will also apply our extradition agreement with partner countries),” said Año.

Interpol is an intergovernmental organization enabling its 194 member countries, including the Philippines, which has been its member since June 1952, to share and access data on crimes and criminals, and offering a range of technical and operational support.

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Año emphasized that the intention of the Republic Act 10592 or the GCTA law is clear — to shorten the prison sentence of those found to have shown good conduct while serving jail time.

“Pero nakalagay din doon na hindi kasama ‘yung mga recidivists, hindi kasama ‘yung heinous crime violators, so wag mo isama ‘yun. Tapos napakalinaw din doon na [‘yung iba] may anim na life terms. Kahit i-apply mo sa isang life term ‘yun, may lima pa eh, so bakit mo naman pakakawalan ‘yun (But it is also stated that the recidivists, and heinous crime violators are excluded, so why release them? It is also clear that some of the convicts have six life sentences. Even if you apply GCTA to one of the counts of life imprisonment, he still has five counts, so why would you release him?),” added Año.

He pointed out that if the BuCor had doubts on the provisions of the law, it should have sought guidance from the Supreme Court or higher authorities. /gsg

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TAGS: DILG, Eduardo Año, GCTA, Interpol
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