CHR condemns torture of robbery suspect in Palawan, says laws exist to prevent it | Inquirer News
Close  

CHR condemns torture of robbery suspect in Palawan, says laws exist to prevent it

/ 08:18 PM July 09, 2021
The CHR has condemned the torture of supposed robbery suspect who died in Coron, Palawan, saying there are laws to repel these kind of acts.

Logo of the Commission on Human Rights

MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) has condemned the torture of supposed robbery suspect who died in Coron, Palawan, reminding law enforcers that laws, like the Republic Act No. 9745 or the Anti-Torture Act of 2009, exist to prevent such practices.

CHR deputy spokesperson Marc Louis Siapno stressed on Friday that all forms of torture for whatever purpose — whether to inflict mental or physical pain — is illegal and unacceptable.

ADVERTISEMENT

“CHR condemns any act that amounts to torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, as also suggested in this incident,” Siapno said in a statement.

“CHR, as the country’s independent national human rights institution, has repeatedly emphasized that any form of torture, may it be inflicting severe mental or physical pain or suffering on somebody else for a specific purpose, is illegal. Freedom from torture is a non-derogable right,” he added.

FEATURED STORIES

Reports and viral videos uploaded on social media as early as July 1 showed a person sitting on the ground — the suspect who was accused of robbing cable wires from a resort — being interrogated by supposed barangay officers.

However, one of those who apprehended the suspect held a metal saw which he used to threaten the robber.

In the 20-second clip, the suspect was seen pleading to the officer to stop, as the person holding the metal saw eventually tried to use it on the suspect’s hands.

“Hindi, mas gusto ko ito eh, ay mas maganda ‘yan, ‘pag naputol ko itutusok ko ‘to [No, I prefer this one, this is much better, if this one breaks, I’ll impel this one],” the reported barangay officer told the suspect, referring to the saw.

As the victim cried and resisted, another person on the video claimed that the suspect was only shedding fake tears, striking him on the head with a wooden stick.

Under this R.A. No. 9745, such practices are illegal as the law seeks to penalize actions that cause “severe pain, exhaustion, disability or dysfunction” on detainees as well as mental or psychological acts “calculated to affect or confuse the mind or undermine a person’s dignity and morale.”

READ: In the Know: Anti-Torture Act of 2009 

ADVERTISEMENT

Siapno reminded officers that international treaties, which the Philippines is a state party to, also prohibits such activities.

“At the same time, a number of international treaties assert this prohibition, which the Philippines has also ratified. Article 5 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 7 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights both stress that no one shall be subjected to torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment,” he explained.

“The United Nations Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment also remind that there can be no acceptable reason to justify torture and that State Parties ‘shall take effective legislative, administrative, judicial, or other measures to prevent acts of torture in any territory under its jurisdiction.’ To this effect, we also highlight that the country also has a standing Anti-Torture Act passed in 2009,” he added.

CHR assured the public that it would conduct its own separate investigation of the incident.

“[CHR], through its CHR Region IV-B office in Palawan, is already investigating the case of Carlo Layaog, 23, who was accused of theft and later died after allegedly experiencing torture from a barangay kagawad and another civilian in Coron, Palawan,” Siapno said.

“Apart from our independent probe, we welcome the investigation of the Coron Municipal Police on the case. CHR extends our deepest sympathies to the family of Carlo. And we hope that we can collective address excesses in exercising authority that ultimately results in violations of human rights and dignity,” he added.

JPV

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.
Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: Anti-Torture Act of 2009, CHR, Commission on Human Rights, Coron, deputy spokesperson Marc Louis Siapno, Human rights, Palawan, Philippine news updates, torture
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

By providing an email address. I agree to the Terms of Use and
acknowledge that I have read the Privacy Policy.



© Copyright 1997-2022 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.