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8 more high profile inmates die of COVID-19

/ 02:29 PM July 19, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Eight other high profile inmates from the New Bilibid Prison have died of COVID-19, sources said.

The inmates or persons deprived of liberty (PDL) are among the 66 occupants of Building 14, the most highly secured facility within Bilibid’s Maximum Security Compound. It houses high-profile inmates, most of which are convicted drug dealers.

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Of the eight, six are Chinese while the two others are Filipino drug lords. Three of the eight were part of the “Bilibid 19” that were previously transferred to the National Bureau of Investigation after then Justice Secretary Leila De Lima discovered that several inmates have been leading posh lifestyles while incarcerated.

One of two Filipino drug lords died May 23 while the other died early June.

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The source said three of the Chinese nationals were cremated at a crematorium in Dasmarinas, Cavite while one was cremated at North Cemetery.

Sought for confirmation, the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) said health records of PDLs are given only to the relatives.

“Health records of patients are released only to the relatives,” BuCor Spokesperson Col. Gabriel Chaclag previously said.

On Saturday, another high profile inmate Jaybee Sebastian died of COVID-19.

Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra, meanwhile, said: “I have summoned BuCor (Bureau of Corrections) Director Gerald Bantag to my office tomorrow. We will find out.”

Reports submitted by BuCor to the Department of Justice showed that as of July 1, no new COVID-19 infection has been reported from all the jails and penal farms. BuCor is supervising seven penal institutions including Bilibid and the Correctional Institution for Women (CIW).

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For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

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TAGS: Bilibid, Building 14, COVID-19, New Bilibid Prison
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