Drilon questions impartiality of DOJ, PAO in Kian slay probe
Senator Franklin Drilon questioned on Sunday the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Public Attorney’s Office’s (PAO) impartiality to probe the killing of Kian delos Santos.
“It’s because of the past incidents you cannot help but doubt the impartiality of the DOJ, and PAO is part of the DOJ,” Drilon said in an interview over DZBB.
The senator was referring to the case of Supt. Marvin Marcos, who was linked to the killing of Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. of Albuera, Leyte. Marcos was suspected of a cover-up following the DOJ decision downgrading the charges against him from murder to homicide, which is bailable.
“Pero tingnan ninyo ang nangyari kay Supt. Marcos, hindi ba murder ‘yung na-file, may findings ang investigating fiscal na murder, pero ibinaba ng undersecretary ng DOJ to homicide,” the senator said.
(But look at what happened with Supt. Marcos’ case, the investigating fiscal filed murder charges against him, but it was downgraded by a DOJ undersecretary to homicide, which is bailable.)
“Dahilan diyan may rason ang taumbayan na mag-iisip, baka naman matulad ito sa kaso ni Supt. Marcos… Ngayon may bago pang assignment itong si Supt. Marcos,” he added.
(Because of that, the public have reason to think that what happened with Supt. Marcos’ case could be repeated… Marcos even has a new assignment now.)
When asked if it is still possible for the Office of the Ombudsman to intervene despite the PAO’s move to file charges against the policemen who killed Delos Santos, Drilon answered, “Pwede po iyan. Walang problema. (It’s allowed. There is no problem with that.)”
Drilon had earlier called on the Ombudsman to conduct the investigation on the killing of the 17-year-old Delos Santos, instead of the DOJ.
Delos Santos was killed by Caloocan City cops after he allegedly resisted arrest during a drug raid on the night of August 16. The policemen’s statements were contrary to some witnesses’ tale and the CCTV footage which showed the boy being dragged by the cops. On Saturday, thousands of supporters joined Delos Santos’ funeral march and continued to condemn the death of the student.
Following the public outrage, Malacañang urged the public to “trust the justice system.”
“Let us allow the legal process to run its course, and trust the justice system under the Duterte presidency,” China Jocson, assistant to the presidential spokesperson, said in a radio interview on Saturday.
Drilon agreed with this but maintained his skepticism.
“Ako rin, iyan ang palagi nating sinasabi na dapat magkaroon ng tiwala ang taumbayan sa sistema ng hustisya dahilan sa diyan nakasalalay ang ating tiwala sa demokrasya,” he said.
(I also believe that the public should trust the justice system because that is where our trust in democracy is founded.)
“Ngunit sa mga nakaraang pangyayari, hindi natin maiwasan na mag-isip kung patas ba ang laban sa DOJ. Hindi naman po theoretical ang mga ito,” said Drilon.
(But because of the previous events, we cannot help but think if DOJ is being fair. These are not just theoretical statements.) JE
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