NUPL asks: Why was Palparan allowed media interview?
MANILA, Philippines — The National Union of People’s Lawyers (NUPL) on Thursday asked why retired Army Maj. Gen. Jovito Palparan, who was convicted for the kidnapping of two University of the Philippines (UP) students, was allowed to give a media interview.
Palparan was a guest in an interview aired on SMNI News on Wednesday. Among those who interviewed him was National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-Elcac) spokesperson Lorraine Badoy.
In a statement, NUPL President Edre Olalia asked if concerned government agencies were aware of Palparan’s guesting in the media program.
“How could a convicted felon serving life for depriving people of their basic human rights be able and allowed to give media interviews at the behest of government officials? Do the courts, Bureau of Corrections, and Department of Justice know this?” said Olalia.
“This is not only thumbing one’s nose at our justice and penal system but mocks equal protection of the law and may be laying the predicate to make him walk soon,” he added.
In the interview, Badoy even claimed that Palparan was a victim of “trumped-up charges” fueled by the “lies” of the New People’s Army.
In 2018, the Malolos Regional Trial Court found Palparan guilty of kidnapping and serious illegal detention related to the disappearance of UP students Sherlyn Cadapan and Karen Empeno in 2006.
The NUPL served as counsel for the families of Cadapan and Empeno.
Palparan was sentenced to reclusion perpetua, or 20 years and one day to 40 years imprisonment, and was ordered to pay P100,000 for civil indemnity and P200,000 for moral damages for each count.