Karapatan okays scrapping of presentation of suspects
() - October 13, 2008 - 12:00am

CEBU – Militant human rights group Karapatan supports and welcomes the order of the new Philippine National Police chief Jesus Verzosa scrapping the old practice of presentation of suspects to the media.

The term “firing squad” is used to describe their position, lined up abreast against a wall.

“Firing squad presentations are blatant violations of basic judicial norms. These negate due process through trial by publicity. These trample upon principle of presumption of innocence of suspects by misrepresenting them as guilty felons before the media,” said Lawyer Poch Cinco, chairman of Karapatan-Cebu.

Karapatan-Cebu encouraged regional police director Ronald Roderos to ensure that field commanders are following the orders especially in Negros.

The group particularly wants Roderos to reprimand Supt. Augusto Marquez who is assigned in Negros Oriental, who allegedly displayed a woman he tagged as NPA courier than two months ago.

Last September 28, Verzosa issued a memorandum warning the 125,000 police force that violations of the order will be meted with administrative sanctions including suspension from service.

It is provided that there will be a penal clause for those who will be videotaped or photographed presenting suspects before the press and allowing their supposed victims to hit them at will while in handcuffs.

The memorandum was released in response to the Human Rights Commission’s request to stop presenting suspects to media as it is a violation of a person’s constitutional rights.

This new PNP directive, Karapatan said, is better than the resolution composed by the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas which suggests the prohibition of media practitioners in attending firing line press conference if the suspects have not been formally charged in court.

The group believes that KBP resolution defeats the purpose of prohibition since most suspects are immediately charged before the prosecutor’s office to cure defects or justify arrests. — Jessica Ann R. Pareja/WAB (THE FREEMAN)

AUGUSTO MARQUEZ HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION JESSICA ANN R JESUS VERZOSA KARAPATAN KARAPATAN-CEBU LAST SEPTEMBER LAWYER POCH CINCO NEGROS ORIENTAL PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLICE RONALD RODEROS
  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

SIGN IN
or sign in with