CA affirms Palparan’s conviction, modifies penalty’s interests
MANILA, Philippines — The Court of Appeals has affirmed the conviction of retired Army Major General Jovito Palparan, who was convicted in 2018 for the kidnapping of two disappeared University of the Philippines (UP) students, and modified the interest of the penalty.
“IN VIEW WHEREOF, the Joint Decision of the Regional Trial Court, Branch 15, Malolos City in Criminal Cases Nos. 3905-M-2011 and 3906-M-2011 are hereby AFFIRMED with MODIFICATION as to penalty and interest only: Accused-appellants are sentenced to the penalty of reclusion perpetua without eligibility for parole. The damages imposed are subject to six percent (6%) interest per annum from the date of finality of this Decision until full payment of the same,” the decision read.
Aside from Palparan, the accused-appellants are Lieutenant Colonel Felipe Anotado and Staff Sergeant Edgardo Osorio.
In Criminal Case Nos. 3905-M-2011 and 3906-M-2011, the three accused-appellants and Major Sergeant Rizal Hilario were charged for the kidnapping and serious illegal detention of UP students Karen Empeño and Sherlyn Cadapan, respectively.
The decision cited Article 267 of the Revised Penal Code (RPC) which states that penalty of reclusion perpetua to death if the kidnapping or detention lasted for more than three days and when the victims are females.
It also noted that applying Article 63 of the RPC, the penalty imposed should be death as allegations of taking advantage of nighttime and use of a motor vehicle were proven during trial.
“However, with the prohibition on the imposition of the death penalty, the penalty must be reclusion perpetua without eligibility for parole,” the decision said.
“The P100,000.00 civil indemnity and P200,000.00 moral damages imposed by the trial court in each case is also correct. These amounts are subject to six percent (6%) interest per annum from the date of finality of this Decision until full payment,” it added.
The decision was certified to have “reached in consultation before the case was assigned to the writer of the opinion of the Court.”
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