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Bill on separate facility for heinous crime convicts gets final Senate nod

/ 03:45 PM December 16, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The Senate has approved on third and final reading a bill seeking to establish separate prison facility for heinous crime convicts.

Senate Bill No. 1055 was approved with 21 affirmative votes and zero negative votes during the Senate’s session Monday afternoon.

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The measure seeks to establish a separate “state-of-the-art” facility for prisoners convicted of heinous crimes.

If signed into law, the Maximum Penal Institution would be built in a suitable location “preferably within a military establishment or [on] an island separate in the mainland.

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The bill though also provides for the establishment of three Maximum Penal Institutions for heinous crimes— in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao

The penal institution will have to be located “in a secured and isolated place ensuring that there is no unwarranted contact or communication with those outside of the penal institution.”

It will be a “state-of-the-art” facility complete with security measures — such as surveillance cameras and extensive security features on locks, doors, and its perimeters, the measure states.

The bill also requires an internal and external inspection of the facility “to ensure that the institution is administered in accordance with existing laws and regulations and to bring about the attainment of the objectives of the penal system.”

The internal inspection will be conducted by the prison administration while the external inspection will be conducted by the Department of Justice (DOJ) on a regular basis.

“The facility shall be maintained clean and habitable at all times. Sanitary and hygienic comfort rooms shall be provided and maintained,” the bill said.

The measure covers all high-level heinous crime offenders who are at prison facilities of the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor).

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