PNP denies arresting, keeping 2 missing Cordillera activists
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Sunday vehemently rejected the allegations that it arrested and is keeping custody of two missing Cordillera-based activists who were former students of the University of the Philippines – Baguio.
“The PNP strongly and categorically denies the allegation that the subject of the writs of habeas corpus, Capuyan, and de Jesus, was arrested by the PNP,” the national police force said in a statement.
“In fact, when the two were first reported missing, the PNP immediately exerted diligent effort to locate the whereabouts of these missing individuals in faithful compliance with our duty to serve and protect the people. Until today, they remain listed as missing persons and subject to follow-up searches thru backtracking from the time they were last seen,” it added.
The PNP made the denial after the Court of Appeals (CA) ordered the Armed Forces of the Philippines and PNP to present missing activists Dexter Capuyan, 56, and Jamil de Jesus, 27.
CA’s order came after its decision last July 10 to grant the petition for habeas corpus filed by the families of Capuyan and de Jesus.
Capuyan and de Jesus disappeared on April 28 in Taytay, Rizal, after several men who introduced themselves as operatives of the Criminal Investigation Detection Group of the PNP took them into custody in two separate vehicles, according to a witness.
The PNP also said that it has records showing that its units issued certifications that Capuyan and de Jesus are not within their respective custody.
“At any rate, a habeas corpus case was filed and is currently being heard by the 13th division of the Court of Appeals. The PNP is set to file its return of the writ on Tuesday, July 18.”
The PNP added that it is ready to participate in the court’s subsequent hearings on August 3 and 10 “to shed light on the matter.”